PDP supporters protest against polls’ result
Supporters of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) yesterday took to the streets in Benin City, in protest against the declaration of Godwin Obaseki as the governor-elect.
The protesters, who stormed the headquarters of the Independent National Electoral Commission, blocked the Benin-Auchi road for over one hour.They accused the INEC and the state governor, Adams Oshiomhole of manipulating the results to subvert the wish of the voters.
Chanting disparaging songs, they described the announced results as fake and a rape of democracy.Among the protesters were youths, under the aegis of Generational Shift Movement (GSM). The demonstrators called for the cancellation of polls in Oredo, Ikpobaokha Local Council and Aduwawa areas of the state.
According to the group’s president, Mike Enahoro, the results of the election were manipulated in favour of the APC.He accused the APC agents of snatching ballot boxes and “when we resisted them, they attacked us.”Demanding justice, he urged the APC and Oshiomhole to accept defeat like the former president, Goodluck Jonathan.
The State Commissioner of Police, Haliru Gwandu, whose convoy attempted to drive through the blockade to get to the INEC’s office, was prevented. Although the police dispersed the demonstrators with tear gas canisters, the commissioner’s entourage however, took an alternative route to the commission’s office.
A woman leader in the state, Mrs. Sorae Lindsay, told The Guardian that the PDP won the election and would not allow the manipulated results to stay.She said: “We will not accept the results as declared by the INEC, because we won the election. All the results announced by the commission are fake and we the voters would not allow anyone to be imposed on us.”
The demonstrators threatened to form a parallel government in the state, if the governorship results were allowed to remain. The senator representing Edo South, Matthew Urhoghide, who arrived at the INEC office at the time, told The Guardian that he was there to complain about the cancellation of the results of Ward 2, unit 9 in Oredo where he voted.
According to the senator, there was no incident of violence at the unit to justify the cancellation of the result, adding: “What they are doing have been pre-determined and I have told the REC to reverse the cancellation.”