By Dennis Agbo
Members of the All Progressives Congress, APC, have protested the result of last Saturday’s bye-election for Isi-Uzo House of Assembly in Enugu state where Mrs. Amaka Ugwueze of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, was declared winner by the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC.
Dissatisfied by the INEC declaration, members of the APC from the state constituency, on Monday, stormed the INEC office in Enugu, asking for reversal of the result.
The protesters carried placards with inscriptions such as: ‘PDP used neighborhood watches with guns on our voters,’ ‘APC rejects result of Isi-Uzo state House of Assembly election,’ ‘We demand for review of INEC result for Isi-Uzo bye election,’ ‘INEC ad-hoc staff were bribed and collaborated with PDP to rig the votes,’ ‘Isi-Uzo bye-election was marred with irregularities, thuggery and rigging by PDP.’
Speaking to newsmen in front of the INEC office, the APC candidate for the election, Engr. Ejiofor Okwor said: “We are here because the votes of the December 5th bye election that was conducted in my constituency were all marred by irregularities. Every day, the INEC will preach to us that the election will be free and fair but we didn’t see that in practice. How can PDP mobilize over 80 buses from the whole south east, full of thugs, to create violence in an electoral process?
“My party agents were chased out, ballot boxes snatched. One of our women was almost beaten to the point of death. Many of them are in hospitals; they were prevented from performing their electoral duties. PDP at every polling unit had massive PVCs they collected from INEC in Isi-Uzo and distributed to people, even to kids of less than 16 years and they came multiple times to vote. I have evidence.
“The victory is ours because my people in Isi-Uzo came out in mass to vote for me, to vote for APC but they were all chased out. The PDP carried ballot papers into houses and thumb-printed them and after they came to mechanically balance them with card readers, asking them to bring extra PVCs so that they could balance it up.
“We are saying no, that we are not accepting the result that was declared and we are saying that INEC should return the victory to APC because we deserved to win and we won.”