The Social Democratic Party, SDP, in Imo State, has asked the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, to cancel the just concluded re-run election in Isiala Mbano state constituency for non-inclusion of its name, logo and symbol in the ballot paper.
The party made this observation in a press statement issued to journalists on Monday, August 1, 2016, in Owerri and signed by the chairman of the party, Comrade Emmanuel Onwueme.
According to him, “We noted that the name, logo and symbol of the Social Democratic Party, SDP, did not appear on the ballot paper in the following wards:- Umunkwo, Ibeme, Osu Owerre 1 and Osu Owerre 2 respectively. The candidate of SDP for Isiala Mbano State Constituency re-run election formally wrote to the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, notifying the commission of this omission and requesting INEC to include the aforementioned wards in the supplementary/make-up elections that took place on Thursday 28th July 2016 but INEC failed to do so.
“The worst was the use of armed security personnel to prevent the Social Democratic Party, SDP, accredited agents from gaining entry into the Local Government Area collation center, and the refusal of supervisory presiding officers, SPOs, to issue SDP agents with registration area (Ward Collation) result sheet form EC.8B (1) and the electoral officer (EO) and the refusal to issue the SDP, Local Government Area (LGA) party agent with the summary result sheet form EC. 8C (1).
“The said election witnessed massive late arrival of election materials in many registration areas (wards) and polling units. There were also incidences of mass snatching of election materials in many polling units across the Local Government Area. The thugs and chieftains of the ruling All Progressive Congress, APC, had a free day in snatching election materials in many polling units while they were being escorted by the security agents. There were also incidences of diversion of election materials to unknown destinations .etc.
“In view of the above, we call on INEC to immediately prosecute all its staff indicted in the electoral offence against the people of Isiala Mbano.” The statement added.