…hail security operatives
…one adhoc staff shot but survived
A coalition of Civil Society Organizations, CSOs under the aegis of Centre for Credible Leadership and Citizens Awareness in a communique on Wednesday said BVAS performed optimally at 97percent during gubernatorial and House of Assembly elections held in Cross River State.
Briefing the press on Wednesday, coordinator of the coalition of INEC observer groups, Dr Gabriel Nwambu in a communique read on behalf the observers noted that:
“The BVAS performed optimally at 97% accuracy. A significant improvement when compared to the 25th February, 2023 Presidential and National Assembly Elections.
“However, we observed 2 instances where the BVAS malfunctioned but supervising officers were quick to replace them as voting continued in good time.
“We observed that during collation in Obanliku LGA, some desperate politicians attempted to induce collation officers to alter already collated results.
“We observed that an ad-hoc staff, one Mrs Glory Effiom Essien who served in Bakassi LGA was shot by a suspected militant on the 19th of March, 2023.
” However, she is alive and responding to treatment.
Hoodlums armed with guns and other dangerous material attacked Ogoja LGA INEC collation Centre with an intent of disrupting the collation. Some ad-hoc staff sustained injuries before the police brought the situation under control.
” Security operatives performed creditably well. The police which is the lead agency in charge of internal security and elections complied significantly with the rule of engagement and fundamental principles of election policing globally.
“We also observed that the Governorship candidate of the APC, Senator Prince Bassey Otu was declared winner of the election having scored the highest number of lawful votes and was declared winner and returned elected.
“Consequently, having analysed INECs logistics in the distribution of sensitive and non-sensitive materials, the performance of the BVAS, the IRev Viewing Portal, the uploading of the results from the Polling Unit level (that is the FORM EC8A Series), we can therefore say that this election in Cross River State was conducted consistent to the electoral guidelines.
“We hereby state unequivocally that the Governorship and State Assembly Elections of 18th March 2023 IN Cross River State is transparent, free, fair and credible.
“We thank the INEC for remaining unbiased in the conduct of this election. The Police and other law enforcement agencies are hereby commended for their quick response to resolving emergencies and adhering to the rule of engagement.
“Finally, for the Governorship and State Assembly elections, we wish to encourage those who lost in the election to embrace the spirit of sportsmanship by congratulating the winners of the said election.