As Nigeria’s 2023 presidential election goes on, a picture trending online shows the Senate Chief Whip, Orji Uzor Kalu (Abia North), displaying the ballot paper to show that he voted for the All Progressives Congress Presidential candidate, Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
Little did he know that the ballot he cast was arguably voided. The fingerprint on the ballot he displayed actually crossed the line and therefore contravened the rule on vote validation as set by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
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Kalu apparently was trying to toe the path of President Muhammadu Buhari who after voting in his country home, Daura in Katsina State, displayed ballot paper for people to see his choice of presidential candidate before putting it in the ballot box.
President Buhari was quoted to have explaned why he did so.
However, Orji Uzor Kalu’s action, as it were, generated controversy following his stated position that Nigeria is not ready for a President from the Southeast, in obvious reference to the candidacy of Mr Peter Obi of the Labour Party.
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A former governor of Abia State and a member of the APC, Orji Uzor Kalu’s display has continued to raise arguments on social media as to whether he had deliberately cast an invalid vote given the closeness of the thumbprint to the line demarcating APC and APGA on the ballot paper.