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PRESS RELEASE: 

On the Rigging in Ekiti South Federal Constituency Elections to House of Rep. on Saturday April 22, 2006

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April 25, 2006

So that the World May Know:  On the Rigging in Ekiti South Federal Constituency Elections to House of Rep.

By now, you must have read or at least heard what transpired in the bye-election held in the Ekiti South Federal Constituency II on Saturday, 22 April 2006. It was not that we did not envisage the attempt to foist a blatant rigging process on the general citizenry. Indeed, we warned that this was in the offing. We, in the Alliance for Democracy and our colleagues in the Ekiti Agenda gave evidence of these planned illegalities to both the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the Police authorities. We had hoped that unlike in 2003, the two national institutions responsible for ensuring the sanctity of the elections and the security of all citizens were themselves not going to be at the centre of the brigandage foisted on Ekiti people. We can confirm without any hesitation that the Police and INEC authorities were not only complicit but also very active in the perpetration of this electoral fraud. To assist the two key perpetrators of this electoral fraud in this act were political thugs from the National Road Transport Workers Union (NURTW) in Ekiti State led by one Omolafe Aderiye, their Chairman.

 

Whilst we are still gathering evidence of all that transpired, we can confirm the following police officers of the 33 Police Mobile Force Unit/Ekiti State Government House contingent were involved in this rape of democracy. They were present and were identified stealing ballot boxes, thumb-printing ballot papers, disenfranchising legitimate voters and harassing our party officials. By the morning of the polls, Police had in their custody no fewer than forty-nine of our party faithfuls, including our candidate, Chief Samuel Idiowo and the Chair of our Election monitoring Committee, Navy Captain (Rtd) Caleb Olubolade, former Military Administrator in Bayelsa State and Gubernatorial aspirant in the Alliance for Democracy and not a single PDP member in detention. A clear case of punishing the victims!

 

In a series of meetings that party leaders held with the Police Commissioner, Mrs Ivy Okoronkwo and her officers on Saturday, 22 April 2006 they all denied complicity and rejected any notion of bias on the part of the police authorities. Yet, there is an allegation that N5million had changed hands between Governor Ayo Fayose and the Police Commissioner with the Chief Security Officer, Gbenga James as the intermediary in the transaction. Although we are not in a position to confirm if this is true or not, we can inform the general public at least that the following underlisted police men were involved in what happened on Saturday. Our investigating team saw all of them in various places in the federal constituency and we challenge the police authorities to deny our claim. We have taken pain to name names, rank and staff number of these men and also the vehicles used by the NURTW drivers in the perpetration of these heinous acts.

 

It is now clear to us that the PDP government in Nigeria remains determined to repeat the electoral fraud that was largely undertaken by them across the country in 2003. Whilst the new leadership of INEC, Professor Maurice Iwu had finally admitted that the 2003 elections were not "credible", what happened in Ekiti State on Saturday, 22 April 2006 has brought into clear relief that a leopard hardly changes its spots easily. INEC is still the handmaiden of the executive branch of government in every sense and there is no way we as democrats will be involved in any further elections at the behest of INEC unless there is incontrovertible evidence of a level playing field. The non-election in Ekiti has shown that INEC is not in the least interested in its own independence nor the credibility of the elections. Even when leaders of the AD visited INEC and expressed dissatisfaction with the conduct of the elections and with the fact that its' staff was complicit, the supervising National Commissioner Mrs Odebiyi displayed almost utter disdain for the representatives of the coalition of parties present in the INEC office. Even if it was true that the Resident Electoral Commissioner had been compromised as we already learned, we had expected that an external party like the Supervising Commissioner would be better placed to be an impartial arbiter, particularly after we received credible information that her own Director of Operations, Alhaji A.A.Kagara from INEC Headquarters in Abuja was beaten up for challenging the electoral fraud being perpetrated in the home of the State's Deputy Governor, Mrs Olujimi in Omuo Ekiti.

 

What is clear to us is that the situation in Ekiti State, and indeed Nigeria calls for a return to the barricades in order to secure the liberty of our people. If the people's true votes will not count, there is no point even legitimising this brazen electoral fraud. The people will fight for their freedom and defend their inalienable right to determine who shall be their leaders. This is why we would ensure that the Ekiti South Federal Constituency fraud cannot and will not STAND. We are determined to do everything to defend our people.

 

 

DETAILS OF SOME POLICE MEN USED BY GOVERNOR FAYOSE IN THE EKITI ELECTION FRAUD

 

Name

Staff Number

Rank

Ekpen Joe

1152

Sgt

Tajudeen Olagbaju

79366

Sgt/Inspector

Usman Sheba

161470

Sgt

Funso Dare

171587

Cpl/Orderly to D.Gov

McFrancis Amoyode

188866

Sgt

Cletus Ihe

177252

Cpl

Sunday Obekpa

188290

Cpl

Anthony Ndubuzor

182194

Cpl

Daniel Musa

207728

Cpl

Ogumbi Ojo

173143

Cpl

Idowu Adewunmi

203921

Cpl

Anawa Abel

187819

Cpl

Robinson Audu

216326

PC

Shehu Akeem

359111

PC

Dabil Damong

179644

Sgt/Governor's Orderly

Gambo Abamu

208252

PC

George Olusola

359970

PC

Isah Bawa

207728

Cpl

Nathaniel E

163460

Sgt

Kayode Fasare

176414

Cpl

 

 

 

 

SOME OF THE VEHICLES USED IN STEALING BALLOT BOXES ACROSS THE CONSTITUENCY.

AG766ADK

BM969LSD

XC347DEA

DK153LSD (Blue Jeep belonging to a Mr Femi Bamisile former NCP candidate against Mrs Olujimi in the last House of Representatives' election)

KA01ADK

XC346DEA (White Mazda)

AH107PHC (White Mazda)

XA721EFY (Blue Mazda)

AX483SSE (White Mazda)

 

 

As major stakeholders in freeing our people from the shackles of oppression and restoring the sanctity of this fragile democracy, we urge you all to take the following steps in helping to ensure that this monumental fraud does not stand:

 

Circulate this information as widely as possible to all Ekiti in the diaspora and friends of Ekiti.

 

Write to the President of the Federal Republic, the Vice President and other senior state officials expressing disgust at what happened in Ekiti and admonishing them to take all necessary measures to correct the anomaly by annulling the election.

 

Petition the Chairman of INEC on the conduct of INEC officials and request the thorough investigation of the election, calling for the withholding of the certificate of returns until all issues relating to the election are satisfactorily cleared;

 

Petition the Inspector General of Police and the Police Service Commission on the conduct of the above mentioned policemen, requesting thorough investigation of the allegations against them;

 

Support morally and financially the legal process to be undertaken by the coalition of parties against the election fraud in Ekiti State;

 

Re-dedicate yourself to rescuing Ekiti State in particular, and Nigeria in general from the elected dictatorship that is gaining grounds here by the minute;

 

Commend other agencies of state that maintained their integrity by avoiding partisanship in the conduct of the elections, particularly the State Security Services (SSS);

 

Make every effort to deepen Nigeria's democratic project by rejecting the "third term agenda" which has become a vehicle for the perpetration of every unlawful act by Governors and their agents in the States.

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Released by the Alliance for Democracy (AD) and The Ekiti Agenda

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