Imo State electorates task INEC on credible poll
Registered voters in Ohaji-Egbema Local Government Area of Imo State under the aegis of Ohaji-Egbema Elites on Monday protested the continued manipulation of election results in the Council Area by politicians in connivance with Staff of Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
The group lamented that elections in the area have never reflected the will of the people, a situation they said is responsible for the indifference of those that represent the people in government to the plight of the people.
Speaking during a courtesy visit to the Resident Electoral Commissioner, Prof. Francis Ezeonu, leader of the group, Francis Ugochukwu, stated that the electorate in Ohaji-Egbema are demanding that their votes should be made to count in the forthcoming election.
He said, “We are worried that in INEC records, our Local Government Area is marked with red and we are poised to change that by collaborating with INEC to ensure that for the first time in our history that we have a free and fair election that will reflect the will of the people”.
Ugochukwu continued that, “the most painful aspect of it is that our people are not as volatile as they are thought to be but the problem of election in our place is complicity of INEC Staff who manipulate the results by manufacturing figures that don’t exist for politicians and this is the cause of the poor representation we are suffering. But we have decided that enough is enough, we want our votes to count this time around. So we are appealing to the Commission to find solution to this problem, we are peace loving and we want to participate in the election. We are not supporting any politician; all we want is a free and fair exercise”.
In his response, the Resident Electoral Commissioner (Francis Ezeonu), stated that the Commission is aware of the challenges in the area, assuring that it will do everything possible to ensure a free and fair polls across the state.
He said, “this election is the most deliberately planned election and INEC has put in place strong strategy that will ensure credible poll but I will advise that you stay back after voting to ensure that your votes count”.
Meanwhile, scores of youths from the Council Area staged a peaceful protest outside INEC office to further buttress the demand.
They displayed placards with various inscriptions such as, ‘INEC let our votes count’, ‘one man one vote is our demand’, ‘voting is our right’ and ‘we say no to rigging’, among others.