Independent National Electoral Commission Appears Before Tribunal, Denies Oni’s Vote Buying Accusation
Written by Olarotimi Oshin on October 14, 2022
The Independent National Electoral Commission has told the Election Petition Tribunal that the June 18, 2022 governorship election in Ekiti State was devoid of vote buying and other irregularities cited by the Social Democratic Party Governorship candidate Segun Oni.
The Resident Electoral Commissioner, Dr. Adeniran Tella, who appeared before the Tribunal on Thursday, said the Commission’s officials, who monitored the election, complied with the provisions of the Electoral Act and Election Guidelines in the conduct of the poll.
Tella, represented by the Deputy Director and Head of Operations, Ekiti INEC Office, Temitope Aina, added that the Commission was not aware of any incident of vote buying as alleged by the Petitioners and there was no inflation of figures in any of the units where the election was conducted.
The INEC chief, who was summoned by subpoena to give evidence at the Tribunal while under cross-examination by counsel to Respondents further affirmed that the total number of votes cast and collated by the electoral agency at the Ekiti governorship poll corresponded with the number of voters accredited.
The witness said the Bimodal Voters Authentication System Machines used to accredited voters functioned well and perfectly and were not in any way compromised during the conduct of the Ekiti governorship election adding that there was no manual collation and indiscriminate recording at any of the polling units.
Recall that Oni, who lost the governorship election and his party, the SDP, who are the 1st and 2nd Petitioners in the case, are before the Tribunal challenging the result declared by INEC which returned Biodun Oyebanji, the governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) as the winner of the election.
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