An INEC Assistant Presiding Officer (APO) who served in Abiakpo, Nto Edino Ward 4, Unit 005, Obot Akara LGA has stunned the Akwa Ibom State Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State with more revelations on what transpired during the Saturday March 9, 2019 Governorship election in Akwa Ibom State.
The INEC adhoc staff who is subpoenaed Petitioners’ Witness 44(PW44) was led in evidence by Petitioners’ Counsel, J.S. Okutekpa SAN, mounted the witness box on Wednesday July 24, 2019 and shocked the tribunal on how PDP sponsored armed thugs who worked for the party and Sen. Chris Ekpenyong stormed the polling units in the area and carted away election materials.
He said “on the day of the Governorship & House of Assembly Election, at about 11:05am, some thugs drove into the Unit in a jeep shooting into the air. Everyone ran away, when we the INEC officials on duty wanted to run, they stopped us.
They packed all election materials and asked us to follow them. They took us to Engr. Chris Ekpenyong’s compound in Abiakpo, Obot Akara LGA.
“When we got there, we saw other INEC officials which they assembled earlier.They asked us to cooperate otherwise no one would leave there alive.
They started stamping on the ballot papers. While this was ongoing, others were thumbprinting.
There were other wards like Wards 2, 3 & 5 and parts of Ikot Abia. They were all thumbprinting.
Because of the fear for my life, I had to cooperate with them. I brought out my phone and started recording short videos.”
The shocking video showed the armed thugs stamping, thumb printing ballot papers and stuffing the ballot boxes.
Under cross examination by Counsel to the Respondents, the witness affirmed that he discreetly recorded the video clip because he feared for his life.
The video was admitted in evidence and marked accordingly.
Proceedings to be continued as Petitioners informed the Tribunal that they have a few more witnesses before they close their case.
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