INEC Materials In Kogi West Election Tampered With – DSS …Commission Confirms Dino Melaye’s Nomination
A finding by the Department of State Services (DSS) has revealed that materials used for the last National Assembly election in Kogi West senatorial district, Kogi State, have been tampered with by yet-to-be identified individuals.
The finding is contained in a preliminary report, dated July 6, 2015 issued by the DSS on its investigation into complains by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) that some materials used for the election had been tampered with.
Kogi State’s Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC), Hussaini Halilu Pai, had on June 20 this year, reported to DSS that some “sensitive electoral documents” used for the last election have been tampered with.
Meanwhile, INEC has confirmed that Dino Melaye was properly nominated as candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) for the last National Assembly election in Kogi West senatorial district.
It was stated in the DSS’s report signed by I. Mustapha (Principal Staff Officer, Investigation) that “it was reported that in the quest to make available these electoral materials for tribunal proceedings in the court, multiple thumb printing were discovered on the used ballot papers among other anomalies.”
The DSS report added that in the course of investigation, several “staff from INEC both from Kogi Local Government Area and the state headquarters, who were believed to, in one way or the other, play a role in the movement and taking custody of the INEC materials were invited to the command headquarters for questioning.”
The report further stated that its findings, from the written statements of INEC staff interrogated, revealed that “some categories of INEC staff were, by their action or inaction, culpable for the anomalies in the said matter.
“It is observed that the matter under investigation may not be unconnected to the above categories of INEC staff, who handled the materials at one point or the other,” the DSS said.
The investigation team said it was yet to unveil the identity of those involved in the crime but added that investigation was stalled by their inability to screen the materials, currently being used at tribunals.
INEC, in its report on the primary held on December 8, 2014, signed by INEC monitor for APC, Kogi West senatorial primary, Shehu Bala Saggi, indicated that Melaye won the primary held at the Township Stadium, Kabba, with 2,077 votes as against that of Bidemi Odeyemi, who scored 326 votes.
“Arising from the results, Hon. Dino Melaye was returned as the elected candidate of the APC for Kogi West Sanatorial elections,” INEC said in its report, a certified true copy of which was obtained yesterday.