APC’s Allegations Against INEC, Baseless, AILM Insists

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Recent allegations of collusion and falsification of election results levelled against the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) by the state Chairman of All Progressives Congress (APC), Mr. Ini Okopido, have been described as baseless and misleading.
This was the position of Akwa Ibom Liberation Movement (AILM) in a press briefing held in Uyo, yesterday.
In a statement entitled, “2019 Election Results: APC And Its Baseless Allegations”, the leader of the movement, Prince Emmanuel Sam, noted that “contrary to the baseless allegations made by the APC, due process was followed by INEC and results of the governorship/House of Assembly were duly collated at polling units, figures announced and relevant party agents signed before moving to local government collation centres for onward submission at the headquarters.
“Such a smooth and straightforward procedure under the watchful eyes of the state Resident Electoral Commissioner, Barrister Mike Igini, was what the APC never expected hence their expression of frustration against INEC.
Sam averred that “if APC chieftains were to pause for a while and engage in soul searching, they would come to terms with the fact that there is no need to point accusing finger at either INEC or PDP because the reality is that during the election, Akwa Ibom people undertook a referendum to reward a party that has brought about life transforming development since 1999 and to consolidate on a sustained peace which Governor Udom Emmanuel has brought to the polity.
“It is worthy of note that the massive support for the governor’s re-election was across party affiliation, including even members of the main opposition.
“So, rather than sounding like a broken record, we urge the state Chairman of APC, Mr. Ini Okopido, to gather evidences of electoral malpractices his party claims to have and approach the election tribunal to seek redress”.
The group alleged that the APC attempted to use the entire security apparatus of Federal Government to wrest power from the people.
“Evidently, all through the campaigns of the All Progressives Congress (APC), its leaders boasted of their plan to use ‘federal might’ to take power by force.
“On election days namely, February 23 and March 9, these threats manifested in parts of the state, including Essien Udim, Ikot Ekpene, Etim Ekpo, Ukanafun, Ikot Abasi, Mkpat Enin, Ibiono Ibom, Itu and others.
“As if that was not enough, the APC imported armed thugs from Edo and other neighbouring states into Akwa Ibom during the period to create an atmosphere of insecurity perhaps to cause a cancellation of the entire exercise”.
He, however, lauded Akwa Ibom people “for going to God in prayers and engaging a high sense of patriotism to take a stand and vote against the aggressor.
“Communities from all ethnic nationalities within the geopolitical area reconnected with each other, uniting with a common objective to stop the attempt to return us back to those dark days of insecurity, impunity and divisive politics”.
Full text of the press briefing reads, “Against the antics of desperate politicians, who were bent on ‘capturing’ our dear state by all means possible, the 2019 general election in Akwa Ibom state ended peacefully with results that reflect the collective will of the people.
“This was an election cycle like never before seen in the state since its creation, where it seemed the entire security apparatus of Federal Government was deployed to wrest power from the people.
“During the elections, February 23 and March 9, these threats manifested in parts of the state, including Essien Udim, Ikot Ekpene, Etim Ekpo, Ukanafun, Ikot Abasi, Mkpat Enin, Ibiono Ibom, Itu and others.
“Known APC stalwarts went about with armed men dressed in security uniforms and caused mayhem, disrupt the electoral process in some polling units and cause other forms of malpractice. More so, the APC allegedly imported armed thugs from Edo and other neighbouring states into Akwa Ibom during the election for the sole aim of creating an atmosphere of insecurity in order to call for cancellation of the entire exercise.