The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) last night offered an update on the weekend bye-elections it conducted in State House of Assembly seats and six Senatorial seats.
Nigerian Tribune checks revealed that results of the elections have since been declared in four senatorial seats.
National Commissioner and Chairman, Information and Voter Education Committee, Festus Okoye justified the declaration of the bye-election for Bakura State Constituency in Zamfara State inconclusive.
Okoye in a statement made available to newsmen in Abuja disclosed that the Returning Officer declared the result inconclusive in the Northwest state in line with the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended) and the Commission’s Regulations and Guidelines for the Conduct of Elections.
He said: “The election for Bakura State Constituency became inconclusive because the 2,181-vote margin between the two leading candidates – those of the PDP (18,645 votes) and APC (16,464) – is less than the total number of registered voters in 14 Polling Units where elections were cancelled or not held, which stands at 11,429.
“Consequently, by the “margin of lead principle”, the election could not be declared and no winner was returned. Voting in the 14 affected Polling Units was marred by over-voting, abduction of staff of the Commission, violence, assault occasioning grievous hurt against INEC officials, burning of INEC materials and snatching and carting away of sensitive electoral materials, resistance to the use of smart cards readers and obstruction of the electoral process.”
The statement revealed that sequel to a meeting held on Sunday, a supplementary exercise would be conducted on Wednesday.
It further warned against the disruption of the scheduled supplementary election.
“The Commission warns all those who have no business with the conduct of the Supplementary Election to keep away from the 14 Polling Units as only election staff, security agencies, voters, accredited observers and media, as well as polling agents, are entitled to be at the locations.
” The Commission is determined to conclude the election and will not condone further attacks on its staff and destruction of materials. We urge all the stakeholders to cooperate with the Commission for the successful conclusion of the Bakura State Constituency bye-election.”
INEC also sympathised with the families of the six policemen who lost their lives when the boat in which they were escorting election staff and materials capsized in Bayelsa State.”
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