Tribunal: Wike Opens Defence, Insists Election Was Peaceful | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Tribunal: Wike Opens Defence, Insists Election Was Peaceful

Posted: Oct 1, 2015 at 12:08 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

By Daniel Abia

Port Harcourt

The Rivers  State  Governor, Nyesom Wike on Wednesday  opened his defense  at the Governorship Election Petition Tribunal with the declaration  that the April  11 governorship election was peaceful,  credible,  free and fair.

Wike’s seven witnesses yesterday  who were voters during the April 11 governorship  election  in  Rivers  State  confirmed  that they voted in a peaceful  atmosphere with the relevant electoral  procedures  followed, especially  accreditation, voting,  sorting of votes, counting and announcement of results.

The governor’s witnesses  tendered their voters card to prove their voting  before  the  Justice  Suleiman  Ambrosa-led  tribunal  sitting  in Abuja,  noted that the allegations  contained in  the  Rivers  APC  petition  are baseless  and unsubstantiated.

Led in evidence  by his counsel, Okey  Wali  ( SAN ), the witnesses were drawn  from  three local  government  areas of the state including Khana,  Andoni  and  Tai  Local Government Areas of the state.

Mr Monday  Buruberi Nkodaa, a civil servant  who voted at  Unit 4 Ward 3 in Tai Local  Government  Area of  April  11 noted that  he was accredited  with  card reader, without  any  violence  as claimed  by  the  petitioner.

He said  all electoral  materials  were shown to them by the  INEC  presiding  officer, pointing  out  that  no soldiers  or mobile  policemen  came to his unit except  conventional  policemen.

Another  witness, Elder Gbonose  Dickson who voted at Unit 4, Ward 1 of Tai  LGA stated that  voting  was conducted  in a peaceful  environment. He said  he did not  witness  any multiple  thumb  printing  or  ballot box snatching.

Another  voter, Bavisa  Perisa who cast his vote at Unit 1, Ward  1 in Khana  LGA confirmed  that  he witnessed the  delivery  of election materials and  was accredited  before he voted. A traditional  ruler, Chief  Samson  Adamgbo  told  the  tribunal  that  he voted under a peaceful atmosphere  at his polling  station  in Ward 2 of Khana  Local  Government  Area.

He said  that  manual  accreditation  was used for  his polling  station. All the witnesses said no soldiers  and  mobile  policemen  came to their polling  units as security  was provided  by  conventional  policemen  and  Civil Defence  Corps.

Under cross  examination by counsel to the APC, Akin Olujimi  (SAN ), the voters noted that the  governorship  election  was successful  in their  respective  units contrary  to  claims  by  the  petitioner.