A high court in Akwa Ibom state has sentenced Peter Ogban, a professor of soil science at the University of Calabar, to three years in prison for manipulating election results.
Ogban, who was the returning officer in the senatorial election in Akwa Ibom north-west in 2019, was also fined N100,000 fine.
He was prosecuted by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
The court found him guilty of altering results of the election to favour the All Progressives Congress (APC) against the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
In January, he told the court he did not rig the election but only collated the results as given to him by the LGA area returning officers.
He was first arraigned in November 2020 after being accused of rigging the election in favour of Godswill Akpabio, then-APC candidate.
INEC had said in a statement issued then: “He changed the outcome of the election by reducing the score of a leading candidate by a huge five thousand (5,000) votes and increasing the losing candidate’s score by the same margin without altering the overall total valid votes cast to avoid detection.
Unfortunately for him, there is no perfect crime as the early information trigger tracking system of the Electoral Operation Support Centre (EOSC), fully activated throughout the period of the election exposed him.”
The commission is also prosecuting Ignatius Uduk, another professor who worked in the election, for alleged unlawful generation of results.
It had said Uduk from the University of Uyo “declared election results collated not by him, but by undisclosed individuals who only handed them to him to announce.”