By Anayo Okoli
A CHIEFTAIN of the Progressive Peoples Alliance, PPA, and candidate for Arochukwu/Ohafia Federal Constituency in last Saturday’s NASS elections, Mr. Nnamdi Orji, yesterday alleged that seven ward chairmen and coordinators of the party were arrested last Friday by operative of state security service, SSS, in a meeting in one of their leader’s house in Ihechiowa, Arochukwu council area and were still being held.
He said the security agency said they would be held till after the elections, describing it an act of intimidation.
Orji also alleged that there was also more threat that more of their men would be arrested before the governorship and House of Assembly elections.
But when contacted, the state director of SSS, Mr. M.C. Oboboechi, said he was not aware of the arrest of PPA members.
He said his men arrested a group of people with about 500 ballot papers at Arochukwu area but did not know if they were PPA or PDP members or members of any other party.
He explained that his men were still investigating the matter.
According the SSS director, the suspects claimed that the materials were somebody else’s who his men were still trailing and would get to the root of the matter.
Commenting on NASS election, Oji said there was no free and fair election in his constituency. He alleged that the election was characterized by intimidation even before the election day last Saturday.
“Election itself was characterized by intimidation by policemen who helped PDP to rig, even carry ballot boxes, and even beat up corpers. This happened in a lot of wards. Results were falsified. In some cases they chased out corps members.
“In Nkporo there were gun shots everywhere, and in some cases ballot materials were taken to the house of the transition Committee chairman to thumb-print,”,Oji alleged.