2023 elections

February 3, 2023

Pat Utomi invaded our Lagos office – INEC cries out 

The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC in Lagos State has accused a Labour Party chieftain, Prof Pat Utomi, of invading its Lagos office.

The INEC Resident Electoral Officer, REC in Lagos, Olusegun Agbaje made this disclosure in an interview on Channels Television’s The 2023 Verdict programme on Thursday.

Agbaje alleged that Utomi invaded the INEC office in the Oshodi/Isolo Local Government Area and held an illegal press conference inside its conference room.

The INEC REC said he didn’t expect such action from a senior Nigerian like Utomi.

He said, “Today in Lagos, Pat Utomi did what we did not expect a senior Nigerian to do. He virtually invaded our office at Oshodi-Isolo Local Government Area with some people we didn’t know and they held an “illegal” press conference inside our conference room at Oshodi.

“Pat Utomi is a senior person, we didn’t expect that from him, that is an invasion. We informed the police accordingly and the DSS about this invasion. It is uncalled for, it is an act of intolerance on his part, what he did today would have led to violence.”

Agbaje said if the LP chieftain had contacted him, he would have offered an explanation to anything he wanted to know, adding that one of the issues in the area is that a lot of people that migrated from the South-East want to vote in Lagos but didn’t transfer their Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs).

He said the only challenge in Lagos is that many people instead of transferring their PVCs from their previous locations, rather did double registrations.

According to him, people with double registrations can’t be issued a second PVC because it is assumed that they already have one.

On the number of PVCs distributed in Lagos so far, Agbaje said that a total of 5,734,559 have been allocated from the old PVCs registered in 2011, 2015 and 2019 while 835,732 PVCs are uncollected.

On the newly registered PVCs of 2021 and 2022, he said the state has received the total of 1.6 million out of which 899,026 have been collected so far and 168,000 uncollected.

Overall, Agbaje said the state received a total of 7.6 million out of which 6.6 million PVCs have been collected with one million PVCs left, amounting to 87% of collected PVCs so far in the state.