INEC suspends Rivers Election, declares inconclusive

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The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, has suspended all elections in all constituencies of Rivers state.

The suspension according to late report on Sunday will continue pending the receipt of a comprehensive report from the electoral commission’s field officers and monitors.

The Electoral commission having cancelled election in eight local government councils of the state explained the recent development saying; “the suspension does not affect constituencies where the exercise has been completed and the results declared by the returning officers”.

Speaking further on the suspension, INEC’s Director in charge of Voter Education and Publicity, Oluwole Osaze-Uzzi, said: “Rather unfortunately, some of these elections witnessed the disruption of the process, including the barricading of some of the INEC Local Government offices and Registration Area Centres (RACs) used for the distribution of Electoral materials which led to the late commencement of the exercise in some places and consequently, its smooth take off.

“Of more serious concern was the level of threats, violence and intimidation of election officials and voters by well-armed thugs and miscreants allegedly acting on behalf of some politicians, which marred the elections in some areas.

“There were reports of numerous attacks resulting in fatalities, kidnappings, ballot snatching, diversion of officials and materials, amongst others, which necessitated its suspension in eight Local Government Areas.

“Regrettably, such deviant behaviour has continued today. Several permanent and ad hoc staff engaged have been attacked, again resulting in fatalities, while some have been forcibly abducted and taken to presently unknown destinations.

“Having reviewed the situation, the Commission is compelled to suspend all further action concerning the exercise in all the other constituencies in the State pending the receipt of a comprehensive report from its Field Officials and Monitors.

“For the avoidance of doubt, it should be noted that the suspension does not affect the constituencies where the exercise has been completed and the results declared by the Returning Officers”. He added.

Although the Electoral Commission is yet to announce a final result for the state and National Assembly polls, it has been confirmed that results are ready in one Federal Constituency and 11 state assembly seats.

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