The All Progressive Congress APC in Taraba State has said elections which took place throughout the state woefully failed to meet the minimum standard for the conduct of free, fair and credible elections contrary to the assertion by the Taraba State Government.
The party in a resolution after its state working committee met to reflect on the conduct of the last election said the elections were characterized and marred by massive rigging, non-usage of Card Readers, ballot box stuffing and snatching, outright allocation of votes, intimidation and physical harassment of APC agents across the state.
The resolution signed by Chairman APC Taraba State Barrister Ibrahim Tukur El-Sudi said elections did not properly take place in some Local Government Areas like, Wukari, Donga, Takum, Kurmi, Ussa and Zing, where APC agents were physically molested and chased away, while votes were fictitiously allocated in favour of PDP and imposed on the INEC Returning Officers, most of whom had already been threatened and compromised.
He said the PDP had arrogantly bandied the notion that the Card Readers were not a lawful part of the election guidelines and therefore had the liberty to fabricate and allocate votes as they pleased. “Indeed, the Card Reader is not electronic voting but an indispensable part of the accreditation process without which no voting could take place. Both the Returning Officer and the Collation Centre ought to have outrightly rejected all votes not produced through the card reader.”The Party also expressed disappointment, “at the unfortunate compromise and insidious collaboration between the PDP and INEC, whereby INEC had mopped up all unclaimed PVC’s and handed them over to the PDP ahead of the elections.
“In virtually all the polling units across the state, PDP had in their possession, thousands of uncollected PVC’s including those of IDP’s and deceased persons, which they freely used to conduct multiple over-voting, in active support by INEC officials. PDP were also in possession of ballot papers, which they freely used in stuffing ballot boxes in some Local Government Areas like, Lau, Bali, and Sardauna Local Government Areas.”
Contrary to the guidelines issued by INEC that elections results should not be announced or accepted under duress, Taraba state APC claimed that most results across the state were collated and received under severe pressure and threats despite protestations by APC agents that the results were fictitious.
“Almost all the results accepted and collated at the State Collation office were challenged at various levels from the units, due to over voting, non-accreditation of voters, outright manufacturing of results, but the complaints were ignored by the INEC Returning Officers in all Local Government Areas.
It was an open fact that even at the State Collation Centre, Jalingo. PDP agents, their thugs and State Government Officials had threatened that if Governor Darius Ishaku was not returned as elected, the State INEC Office would be burnt down including the officials involved in the collation exercise. It was a clear case of intimidation.”
The Party insisted that the results are therefore not only unacceptable but also cannot form the basis for the declaration of Architect Darius Ishaku as the elected governor of Taraba State.