Femi Folaranmi, Yenagoa
The All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship campaign organisation, has raised the alarm over alleged printing of ballot papers and other sensitive materials by the Bayelsa State Government and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) at Government House.
The party alleged that preliminary investigations showed that the process of printing of the said electoral materials has reached an advanced stage within Government House.
The APC in a statement signed by Ebimobowei Tamarapriye on behalf of the Security Committee of the Governorship Campaign Council, called on the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), the police and all other security agencies, to investigate and impound the printed ballot papers and other sensitive materials at Bayelsa State Government House.
The statement read in part: “Information at our disposal indicates that the process of printing of the said electoral materials has reached an advanced stage within Government House. No doubt, this is a very weighty information that needs to be investigated with utmost urgency by INEC and all relevant security agencies as it has the capacity of snowballing into a major crisis. This, no doubt, is a very crucial period in the annals of our state as we go to the polls to elect a new governor. It is, therefore, quite worrisome that the state government and its party have chosen this ignominious path obviously to upend the electoral wishes of our people.
“It is also shocking that a party that claims ownership of structures strong enough to win the forthcoming elections has condescended to the lowest moral state of printing electoral materials for no other reason than thumb printing same, entering results and compromising INEC staff to accept same as authentic results. This desperation on the part of the state government and the PDP is birthed on the very clear signals that Bayelsans have resolved to reject the PDP and its governorship candidate at the polls.”
However, the Diri/Lawrence governorship campaign organisation in a swift response denied the allegations and insisted that it is the APC that has questions to answer on plans to compromise the electoral process.
The Director, Media and Publicity of the campaign organisation, Jonathan Obuebite said APC which does not have capacity to win election in the state has concluded arrangements to disrupt the electoral process in its desperation to take over Bayelsa State.
“The INEC is under the APC. The REC has been biased in past elections and this election he has also displayed partisanship. The APC is obviously telling the world what they are planning to do. The APC does not have the capacity to win election in Bayelsa. The few campaigns they have done were only made possible by PDP members that defected to APC, which means they have nobody until PDP members defected to the party.
“Bayelsa is predominantly PDP and APC knows it cannot win election. Their plans are to use the military, compromise other security agencies and unleash violence to rig the election. Already, they have compromised INEC which has appointed presiding officers of their choice. But our people have vowed to resist them. All what PDP is asking for is one –man, one-vote and a level playing field for all the political parties participating in the election.”