Saturday, 6 September 2014

INEC clears APC over Osun electoral officers’ sack

THE Independent National Electoral Commission in Osun State has denied the claim that two of its officers were suspended for colluding with the All Progressives Congress (APC) to rig the state’s August 9 governorship election. Its Chief Public Affairs Officer, Mrs. Adenike Tadese, in a statement yesterday, said it was imperative to comment and correct the erroneous impression created by media reports, concerning the suspension of the two officers. The statement reads: “It is pertinent to clarify and also set the record straight that the two electoral officers, Mr. Funsho Tope Fabunmi (Osogbo Local Government) and Mr. Anthony Olusegun Esinoye (Obokun Local Government), were not suspended based on allegedly collusion with the APC to manipulate electoral process in favour of the party in Osogbo and Obokun Local Government Councils. “They were neither culpable of selling ballot papers to the APC nor manipulation of Form EC8C to favour the APC and voiding of PDP votes counted in favour of the APC. Mr. Fabunmi was suspended based on administrative lapses occasioned in the course of discharging his duties. “Mr. Esinoye, Electoral Officer, Obokun Local Government, on August 7th, 2014 was alleged by the people of Obokun Local Government Area of diverting sensitive election materials and was arrested by the police in the area. “A press release was immediately issued to correct the spurious allegation that non-sensitive materials, which were supposed to be deployed alongside with the sensitive materials were erroneously taken to the Registration Area Centre along with materials meant for the setting up of the centre by the Assistant Executive Officer of the Local Government while the Electoral Officer was at the State Office of the Commission in Osogbo for the collection of the sensitive election materials in the presence of security and political party agents. “It was at the point of retrieval of the non-sensitive materials that the residents of the area accosted him and raised alarm that drew the attention of the police. It is important at this point to emphasis that INEC Headquarters did not find the Electoral Officers culpable of working for the APC to rig the election as purported by the PDP. “We strongly believe that the stories in the dailies are part of grand design to cast aspersion on the integrity of INEC. It is our wish to state unequivocally that INEC will always be forthright, transparent and alive to her responsibilities and have zero tolerance for indiscipline and will bring erring officer to book.”

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