Thomas Pere in Port Harcourt
It was a great disappointment in Rivers State at the weekend as the
Rivers Rerun election slated for Saturday was characterized by
massive shootings, bomb explosions ballot box snatching etc.
Voting did not start in most polling centres until about 10 am in
the morning.
In Okubolo Local Government areas, where we had snatching of
electoral materials , there were no security personnel around
especially in ward 9 unit 3.
In Asari Toro Local Government Area voting was initially going on
smoothly but the military completely took over the entire water
fronts.
In some centres in Bonny Local Government Area voting did not commence
until about 10.40 am in the morning but there were allegations of no
result sheets.
The worse case scenario however took place within the Ogoni area of
the state especially in TAI and Khana and GOKANA local government
Areas where there were shootings, explosions and at least two people
lost their lives in the process.
In this election, Soldiers and Anti Robbery Squad took over security
from Policemen.
Even the Deputy Inspector General of Police [DIG] in charge of the
election Abilak Joshak said ‘what we experienced here is different
from what we had elsewhere’, he was talking about Ondo states where
he was also in charge of security.
In Gokana local government area SARS gave cover to thugs who
allegedly hijacked ballot materials.
Meanwhile Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike said the Peoples
Democratic Party [PDP] lost some members to security operatives
during the re run election. He said PDP agents were sent out of
collation centres.
The governor said ‘we are resisting it,it may take our lives, that’s
the sacrifice to make, you don’t fool Nigerians, if you don’t want
Democracy say so, but don’t fool Nigerians, This has never happened
before. It has caused us lives, no problem, it is unfortunate’.
He said the APC was bent on returning a candidate, by all means.
But APC chieftain Victor Ogiadoh commended Security operatives and
the Independent National Electoral Commission [INEC] for a job well
done.
The re run election took place only in 3 Senatorial districts, 8 House
of Reps and 13 State House of Assembly.
Elections in Abonema has however been postponed till Sunday.

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