The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has suspended election in nine wards of Ogori/Magongo Local Government Area of Kogi State due to electoral malpractices, particularly the incident of result sheets completed before voting.
INEC National Commissioner and Member of the Information and Voter Education Committee Mohammed Kudu Haruna said in a statement on Saturday that the Commission has received reports from its officials in Kogi State on the incidents.
He said the reports indicate that the incidents occurred in Adavi, Ajaokuta, Ogori/Magongo, Okehi and Okene Local Government Areas, with the most serious incidents occurring in Ogori/Magongo, affecting nine of 10 Registration Areas.
“This is entirely unacceptable. Any result not emanating from the Commission’s process in the Polling Units will not be accepted,” Haruna said.
He added that the Commission is determined not to reward bad behaviour and has consequently suspended the election in the nine wards of Ogori/Magongo LGA.
“The incidences in the other Local Government Areas are being thoroughly investigated, and the outcome, including the way forward, will be announced in the next 24 hours,” he said.
Haruna said INEC is following the audit trail of personnel and materials to ascertain those who may have been complicit in undermining the process.
“We have a record of all officials deployed at various levels as supervisors, monitors, technical staff or polling unit officials and all election materials issued to them. Appropriate sanctions will be applied where necessary,” he said.
INEC assured voters in Kogi State that their votes are protected and their wishes will be respected.