The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has cancelled the results of 63 polling units in four local government areas of Kogi over thuggery and failed BVAS.
The LGAs are Okehi, Omala, Ulama-Boro, and Ibaji. The most affected was Okehi LGA, which the state government had dug some of its roads a few days before the election to prevent criminal elements from gaining access to the area.
The Okehi Collation Officer, Emeka Oguju, while presenting the results to the State Collation Officer, Wahab Egbewale, at the Kogi Collation Centre, said the results of 31 polling units were cancelled due to thuggery.
According to Mr Ogujo, 12,037 votes were cancelled in the 31 polling units in four wards, in which voting materials were carted away by political thugs.
“In most affected polling units, there was violence caused by political thugs, who invaded the units and disrupted the entire process, ” he said.
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The Collation Officer for Omala Local Government Area, L. Adang, told the State Collation Officer in the situation room at the INEC state office that 16 wards were affected by thuggery during the exercise.
According to him, 9,558 votes were cancelled in the affected polling units of the area.
Also presenting his results, Adamu Wakili, Collation Officer for Olama-Boro LGA, disclosed that 3,582 votes in five polling units were cancelled due to thuggery and non-functional BVAS during the general elections on Saturday.
“Aside from the activities of political thugs that affected the election in our area, we had an issue with one BVAS, which couldn’t function because of the remoteness of the community it was taken to.
“We tried to see whether it could work, but we couldn’t, and only five units in that community were affected. We have reported that to the REC, ” he said.
Also, Ibaji LGA’s Collation Officer, Dauda Tanko, said the results of 11 polling units were cancelled in the area due to thuggery.
Mr Tanko, who did not specify the number of votes affected by the cancellation, said four registration areas were affected by the activities of political thugs.
When you don’t empower people, you end up breeding criminals who will terrorize the communities that is what is playing out in Kogi and many other states across the country.