Dr. Cyril Omorogbe, Delta State Resident Electoral Commissioner, has threatened that politicians and their surrogates who convert their houses and farms to polling units and deprive others access to exercise their franchise during the general elections would be handed over to police for prosecution.
Omorogbe also allayed the fears making the rounds in the state that politicians have perfected plans to take possession of uncollected voters’ cards to commit fraud in the coming elections.
The REC who spoke Wednesday in Asaba during the Stakeholders’ Briefing on Niger Delta Watch 2019, warned that some trouble makers would want to frustrate the commission but vowed to arrest such people, hand them over to security agents while the commission would make necessary arrangements to prosecute them in line with the constitution of Nigeria.
He revealed that 95 percent of people who registered in Delta State have collected their voters’ cards, unlike in some states where the cards are abandoned.
He said the response of voters in the state was commendable just as he confirmed that those who have not been able to collect their voters cards should not lose hope as more cards would still come to the state.
On the possibility of having free and fair election in some Local Government Areas that are flash points, he assured that there was no cause for alarm in such LGAs as Ughelli North, Warri North, Ndokwa East and Ndokwa North as security arrangements had been perfected, noting that the Nigerian Navy would protect sensitive materials at the riverine areas with gun boats at the front and back.
In his over view of reports from Delta State on current political and security trends/other issues, Esike Ebruike, stated that in the last one week, there had been verbal and physical threats aimed at intimidating political opponents, particularly with respect to the two major political parties, the PDP and APC.
He said the governorship candidates of PDP and APC in the state have been very civil but their surrogates were potentially fanning the embers of violence should their candidates do not win, leading to one person being murdered at Uvwie LGA, kidnapping in Udu LGA, violent youth protest in Patani LGA, Warri South West LGA and destruction of opponent posters which, he said, were pointers of things to come.
Earlier, Joseph Ekong, Team Leader, has said that Niger Delta Watch 2019 is a citizens-led elections observation project reporting on the 2019 Nigerian Presidential and Governorship elections, which focus on the states of Rivers, Bayelsa, Delta and Akwa Ibom, a joint initiative of stakeholders, Democracy Network, SDN, and the Civil Society Situation Room (CSSR), and builds on previous election observation work carried out by SDN, including during the 2011 and 2015 elections circle.