March 18, 2023

Ortom casts vote, urges INEC to stick to provisions of guidelines


Governor Samuel Ortom

By Peter Duru, Makurdi

Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State has urged the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, to stick to the provisions of the Electoral Act 2022 by ensuring real time transmission of the results of the Governorship and State Assembly election from the Polling Units to its server to avert the manipulation of the results.

The Governor who spoke shortly after casting his vote alongside his wife, Dr Eunice at about 9:35 am at Tse Ortom Polling Unit 016 in Guma Local Government Area, LGA, of the state, commended the electorates for coming out in their numbers to cast their votes.

While cautioning INEC against deviating from the provisions of the guidelines, the Governor said, “I hope that INEC has taken note of the great mistake that was done during the voting exercise and transmission of results in the last election because you cannot shift the goal post in the middle of the game. That was what INEC did the last time.

“On the part of the electorate, they did well as you can see, the BVAS, the accreditation and the voting process have been made. The challenge, is why did they not upload the results of the last election electronically as stipulated in their guidelines?

“That is what we were working with and you go and shift the goal post and that is how the election was rigged and we are completely dissatisfied with what had happened and it is unacceptable and that is why we have gone to court because we are law-abiding citizens, we don’t want crisis.

“As you can see, there is peace everywhere, we have no intention, the opposition is jittery and that is why they have gone accusing the PDP of the use of arms, militia and weapons among others.

“You can see what is happening here. This is my hometown and everybody is in the queue to vote. All the polling units are here because of the security situation we have within our communities here.

“I have tried to find out in other locations in Guma Local Government Area and other places in the state, there is no crisis whatsoever. Let everybody go and vote but let INEC do the needful.

“From here, we want the result to be transmitted. Let us know who has the highest votes, not going to doctor it somewhere and say there is a problem with the server.

“I think Nigerians are not ready to hear that. The international observers have completely disagreed with the process in which the producer who later emerged as the winner.

“And today the turnout is very impressive. It is just around 9 am and more people are coming out to vote. Our people are more sensitized and they are here to protect their votes until it is transmitted.”