Wednesday, April 15, 2015

ABIA STATE GOVERNORSHIP AND HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY ELECTION 2015

The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC State head quarters Umuahia distributed materials for the election on Thursday, April 9, 2015 to the 17 Local Government Offices in the state.

On Saturday, April 11, 2015, the INEC offices in Local governments started distribution of material to different polling Units at 8.00am.
At Aba North and South LGAs, the distribution of materials ended at 9.32 and 10am respectively. When we went round the areas at 11am, we discovered that some Polling units in Aba started accreditation very late while some within Aba main town commenced at about 9am.

USE OF CARD READERS FOR ACCREDITATION:
In most of the Polling units we visited, we discovered that the card readers were working without problem. In some places where they encountered problems, they made necessary contacts that helped them in resolving the problems.

However, the card readers failed to function in Abiriba, ohafia Local Government Area for the accreditation to take place.

The accreditation took place in other areas without problem except in parts of Osisioma, Obingwa where some thugs were harassing people.

TURNOUT OF VOTERS
following intimidation from some Ngwa thugs who were acting on tribal sentiments, many people did not come out to vote in Aba and its environs. Therefore, the turnout was very low all over Nigeria.

VOTING EXERCISE
The voting exercise started on time. At 1.30pm, almost all the Polling units started the voting after the accreditation. The same armed thugs in Obingwa, Ugwunagbo, Osisioma, and Isiala Ngwa Local Government areas were going round harrasing people who came out to cast their votes. At Aba South, Enyimba-obuda Village Hall, School of Health Technology and other places,intimidating voters. They were armed with machete and other weapons, asking people that were not going to vote PDP to go out and never to cast their vote.

At Umuola Okpulor hall-Council Hall, the armed thugs beat the INEC staff and made away with all the materials used for the election when the voting exercise was still going on.

At Osisioma, Ariaria and Flyover areas, the armed thugs intimidated and chased away all voters that refused to vote for the PDP candidates.

SECURITY
Security operatives were all over the place in Aba main town. As a result of the security presence, some of the thugs were apprehended but released by the soldiers.

At Aba, Ogbor Hill waterside, the Transition Committee Chairman of Obingwa, Obinna Nwabiaraije was apprehended by the soldiers. He was carrying INEC properties including large number of PVCs, card readers, election result sheets and other properties. He was displayed with the INEC materials at the waterside at 5pm, but later released in the evening with all the materials.

COLLATION
Results of the elections were announced at various polling units and APGA won in Aba North and South. However, we observed that some known PDP members were carrying APGA Party Agent tags which caused conflict between other APGA agent. Those that were alleged to be PDP members who were carrying APGA tags had letters signed by Prince Ukaegbu as Secretary and Regan Ufomba as Governorship candidate. Our inquiries proved that Prince Ukaegbu and Regan Ufomba had publicly supported the PDP governorship candidate before the election, but they later turn arround sent people as APGA agents to sign whatever document that would be presented as the result on behalf APGA.