The Special Adviser to Governor Rochas Okorocha of Imo State on Electoral Matters, Steve Asinobi, and his (governor’s) associate, Paschal Onwukaike, have violently disrupted the collation of the governorship election.
Their action followed the refusal of the PDP agent at the collation centre, Uche Onyeagocha, to allow the announcement of the results for Ideato South Local Government Area.
While Asinobi represented RP party at the collation centre, Onwukaike represented DA.
The PDP agent said no other party agent apart from AA signed the result for Ideator South Local Government Area where he alleged Governor Okorocha personally chased out all party agents and replaced the INEC result with his personal one.
Onyeagocha queried the authentication of the results, insisting that the result could not be presented.
He said the party had submitted a petition to the REC immediately the incident happened and that the REC confirmed same from the returning officer for the local government.
But while the Returning Officer for the state’s governorship election, Francis Otunta – vice-chancellor of the Federal University of Agriculture, Umudike, Abia State, said the petition would be looked into and ordered that the result be read, Onyeagocha hijacked the results sheets and tore it.
Both Messrs Asinobi and Onwukaike, who had insisted the results should be announced also violently scattered the remaining results and threw the entire hall into confusion.
The electoral officers were quickly smuggled out of the hall by security agents.
This happened at exactly 5:03 a.m just when the results for the 12th local government of the state’s 27 local governments was about to be announced.
The security agents have arrested the culprits and taken them out of the INEC headquarters.
The hall has just been locked up now while journalists are awaiting the Resident Electoral Commissioner, Chukwuemeka Ezeonu, to address them.