EXPOSED: Documents Reveal Irreconcilable Figures In Akwa-Ibom Gov Election; Akpabio, REC In Dilemma Over Excess Votes
*INEC Headquarters Raises Eyebrows Over Difference In Accredited Voters And Declared Result
The Akwa Ibom State Governor Godswill Akpabio and the State Resident Electoral Commissioner Mr. Austin Okojie are currently in serious dilemma on the best way to ‘clean up’ the embarrassing fallout from the results of the April 11 governorship election in the State declared by the State INEC Returning Officer, Prof. James Ekpoke.
A copy of the Summary of Accredited Voters which was forwarded to the INEC headquarters, and obtained by us through a credible source at the INEC headquarters shows that contrary to the 996,071 votes declared by Prof. Ekpoke as the total number of votes which the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate, Udom Emmanuel allegedly polled to defeat his closest rival, Umana Okon Umana of the All Progressives Congress (APC), the total number of accredited voters captured by the Electronic Card Readers in Akwa Ibom state stood at 647,215.
However, based on the copy of the summary of the controversial result which the State INEC Returning Officer, Prof. James Epoke used in declaring the results of the election, and which was also forwarded to INEC headquarters, the figure penned down as the total number of registered voters stood at 1,548,531 while 1,158,624 was given as the total number of accredited voters.
The official at the INEC headquarters who mailed the original copy of the document revealing the total number of accredited voters as captured by the Electronic Card Readers disclosed that there has been several questions arising from what he described as the alarming discrepancies in the results declared in Akwa Ibom State.
“To be very honest with you, the PDP in Akwa Ibom and our oga who is the REC there did not do their homework well. And unless they look for a way to block the alarming loopholes, they would end up dragging their names in the mud. As a Resident Electoral Commissioner, you saw that the Chairman of the Commission, Prof Attahiru Jega had, just in one glance during the declaration of the presidential election spotted discrepancies in the result coming from this same Akwa Ibom state, where you presided over as REC, and had told the Returning Officer to go back and sort it out, yet, you didn’t learn.”
“What would it have cost you to relax, call all the parties you had worked with to declare this controversial result and then work all through the night to ensure that you allocate the figures perfectly in such a way that the total number of accredited voters as captured and presented by the card readers corresponds with the results you declared?. Right now, even if you were to tell it to my 3 years old daughter, how would you go about explaining to her that almost the same margin the President used in winning the election in Akwa Ibom state is the same one the PDP candidate used in defeating the closest contender?”
“Where is the room for the decline in the number of votes due to outbreak of violence that reportedly marred the voting process in the State? Or would you say that people will still stay back to vote after gunshots have been fired and people scampered away for safety? How about the voters’ apathy that was recorded nationwide, did your figures reflect that? Check out the results declared by some other states and you would find that the margin can never be that big like what you have in your state.”
“These are the places we at the Commission believe the election was free and fair. But then, most of these shocking revelations will be made at the tribunals that have just been constituted. I have worked in this Commission for over 15 years now and this are just elementary issues for some of us. That una Akwa Ibom state na real abracadabra state, I swear. ” The source at INEC Headquarters stated.
Meanwhile, we can report authoritatively that the reason for the delay in the declaration of the results for the elections into the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly was a fallout of the inability of the State Resident Electoral Commissioner to perfectly allocate figures to each of the candidates vying for the election in a way that they do not contradict the overall result declared for the governorship polls.
It would be recalled that a mild drama played out during the declaration of the Presidential poll as the INEC Chairman, Prof. Attahiru Jega had to stop the announcement of the result for Akwa Ibom state and consequently asked the Returning Officer for the State to go back and sort out the discrepancies noticed in the results.
Thousands of people protested in the State capital on Sunday 12th April, 2015 in response to the wide malpractice and violence that characterised the elections. The protest disrupted traffic flow in Uyo for hours. The police has so far confirmed the killing of 3 persons during the elections in the State.
Both local and foreign observers have faulted the elections in the State as falling below acceptable standards. In separate statements, the American Embassy in Nigeria and the European Union Observer Mission said elections in the State was deeply flawed.
The Nigerian Civil Society Situation Room led the Director, Policy and Legal Advocacy Center (PLAC), Mr. Clement Nwankwo, has equally called for a total cancellation of elections in the State.