Okon Bassey in Uyo
The Young Progressives Party (YPP), Akwa Ibom State, has totally condemned and rejected the conduct of the governorship and State House of Assembly in the state, vowing to challenge the results in the court.
At a press conference in Ùyo yesterday, the state secretary of YPP, Ambassador Kelvin Umoh alleged massive rigging, intimidation , violence and killing executed by agents of the state government and officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in the conduct of the elections.
“Not only do we seek redress against the misconduct of the polls; we are also calling for dispassionate action against all perpetrators of evil on that Election Day and for those who killed innocent souls to face justice,” he said.
Umoh, who said the elections were “not the will of the electorate In Akwa Ibom State” noted that reports from YPP agents, voters and independent observers corraborated by credible intelligence have given evidence that the elections were rigged against the will of electorate.
The YPP secretary also alleged that fake security personnel, who dressed in police, military and para-military uniforms, were used against YPP agents and supporters in polling units and registration area centres across the state.
“The electorate in Akwa Ibom State witnessed a spectacle of well-orchestrated rigging scheme and bloodletting brazenly executed during the gubernatorial/state house of assembly polls by agents of Governor Udom Emmanuel–led administration and officials of INEC in favour of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
“At the collation and announcement of the gubernatorial election result on Sunday, March 19, 2023 by INEC, we, as a party, did not append our signature on the result sheet because it doesn’t reflect the will of the electorate in Akwa Ibom State.
“Reports from party agents, voters and independent observers as corraborated by credible intelligence, were categorical that the conduct of the gubernatorial/state house of assembly election was a mere ruse on the intelligence of the electorate who had earnestly desired to use the opportunity to usher in the right leadership in the next dispensation for the State.
“To pull the wool over the eyes of poll observers and members of the public, the rigging syndicate of the state administration and INEC officials selected a few locations to allow the conduct to run a bit fairly – mainly in most parts of Ikot Ekpene Senatorial District and Uyo Senatorial District while Eket Senatorial District was shambolic, as most of the polling units’ results were pre-written.
“Worse still, the PDP state administration also deployed hired thugs who were dressed in police, military and para-military uniforms to kill, molest, maim and chase away YPP’s Party Agents and supporters in the Polling units and Registration Area Centres (RACs) across the State.
“Instances abound like the case in Ibiono Ibom where PDP armed militia killed some of our supporters including Mr Abraham Bassey Ekpenyong at the INEC office. This dastardly act was carried out by a team of police men from Government House, Uyo led by Danjuma Saleh who moved in a convoy of six white Hilux pickup trucks.
“In Atan Offot, Uyo, a YPP Local Government Agent was beaten mercilessly by thugs, about 15 in number, led by Mr. Ime Uwah, SSA to Governor Udom Emmanuel who personally had a gun with him.
“Mr Ime Uwah’s gang also went around polling units in Atan Offot to chase away YPP agents and key supporters while carting away electoral materials and results from these units – inflated them and announced in favour of the PDP. This carting away was done even in the presence of foreign observers.
“Furthermore, three of our supporters were killed at Etim Ekpo and several others in other LGAs across the state. Even at Onna LGA, where Governor Udom Emmanuel hails from, thugs in police and military uniforms led by his Chief protocol officer, Mr Edmond Ufang, intimidated and maimed our supporters freely. In fact, any person identified as a supporter of YPP was decreed as a persona non grata, deserving elimination” YPP State Secretary stated.
“Aside these ugly scenes, the fact is that fake result sheets as against the originals pre-signed by the REC were used in collating results in most units across the state.
“We have official reports that the same dastardly acts played out in other areas of the State including but not limited to all LGAs in Eket senatorial district, and some local government areas in the state like Ini, Ukanafun, Oruk Anam, Etim Ekpo, Ika, Abak, Essien Udim, Ikot Ekpene, Itu, Etinan, and Uruan.
“Also worth mentioning is the massive hijacking of electoral materials in these LGAs by the PDP agents in collusion with INEC staff and security personnel in these areas.
“For instance, materials in Ini LGA were hijacked to Dr Glory Edet’s house; that of Ika to Barr Utibe Nwoko’s house; that of Ikot Abasi to Engr. Uwem Okoko’s house; Eket to Hon Francis Archibong’s house; Oron to Senator Akon Eyakenyi’s house, etc.
“On another plank, the state government and the PDP agents were seen brazenly and openly paying people N10,000 to buy their votes. Credible intelligence suggest that the state government and the PDP agents paid about N1.3 million per unit across the 4,353 units in the state, $5,000 to each ward across the 329 wards in the state as part of their voters buying strategy,” he stated.
The party called on the Department of State Services (DSS), National Intelligence Agency (NIA), Foreign Missions, International Observers and relevant bodies to stand up against the malfeasance by INEC and the PDP in the March 18 elections in the State.