*prevent movement of electoral materials from centre, without announcement of results
Residents of Narayi Ward in Chikun Local Government Area of the state have laid siege on the ward’s collation centre, vowing not to leave until the results of the local government elections held on Saturday May 12 are officially declared at the ward level.
Reports say they were seen there on Sunday morning, still insisting that the returning officer, who was responsible for announcing results collated from the 18 polling units are announced.
Two women who also passed the night with youth at the collation centre, one Esther Anthony and Ruth Caleb appealed to the state Government to intervene noting that they would not leave the collation center or allow the ballot printed papers to be moved until the returning officer shows up to announce the results even if it will take one year they would wait.
The election which was conducted peacefully in all the 18 polling unit’s despite the discovering of an extra two electronic voting machines brought in by the SIECOM was announced at the polling unit centers but not announce at the collation center of the ward with the ballot papers and the voting machine still at the center as at the time of filling this report.
The results announced at the polling units indicate that the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) is leading in all the 18 polling units.
Reacting to the drama, the people of the Narayi Ward are calling for justice to be done to avoid any chaos in the area.
One Mr. Emmanuel Banabas while reacting on the issue, described the returning officer’s disappearance as a deliberate attempt to deny the Narayi people the right to vote and be voted for as well as their choice of the people they want to represent them at the local government level.
According to him, the people took the decision to stop the SIECOM officials to convey the election printed ballot papers and other materials used for the election in under to protect their votes and ensure that they count as directed by Governor Nasir el-Rufai.
“We the people of Narayi Ward are law abiding citizens, we are following the instruction of our Governor, who said come out vote, wait for your vote to be count, protect it, so we are just protecting our votes,” he said.
Mr. Banabas however called on the Federal Government as well as international bodies to intervene on the issue.
An elderly man with the name Daniel Yero said the election was conducted peacefully and that all the polling units brought their various results to the collation center and wondered why the SIECOM returning officer was not around to announce the results officially.
He alleged that the action of the returning officer shows that there was an initial plan by some SIECOM officials to rig the election which shows by the surplus voting machines brought to the area, noting that their plan had failed.