Elections: INEC’s fact-finding visit to Rivers a waste of time, says Group

Elections: INEC’s fact-finding visit to Rivers a waste of time, says Group

Saturday, March 16, 2019 4:59 pm

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Okafor Ofiebor/Port Harcourt

An advocacy group, the Rivers Unity House (RUH) has faulted the visit of the Fact-Finding Committee of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to Rivers State, following the suspension of the gubernatorial election in the state.

The group also pointed out it is politically naive for some politicians in the state to claim that the governorship candidate of the African Action Congress (AAC), Biokpomabo Festus Awara, is unknown.

The Convener of RUH, Kingsley Wenenda Wali who spoke while he appeared on a live radio programme monitored in Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital on Saturday affirmed that it is ridiculous for some members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to claim that the AAC governorship candidate was unpopular in the state, when they are aware of his endorsement by the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the state before the election.

He wondered if APC, which is a viable, strong opposition party, is a pushover despite the crisis it has been enmeshed in the state.  

He also described the visit of the INEC fact-finding committee as a mere waste of time and resources.

According to Wali:  “I don’t feel comfortable discussing INEC. Let’s say I doubt if INEC is fair. I doubt that very much. They brought themselves into the playing field as active participants, because as civil servants members of INEC should not be saying or doing thing will stoke flame or fire as it were. They are usurping the job of security agencies.

“What is all these about the Fact-Finding Committee? They have the DSS, which is part of the electoral process. What report can’t you get from the DSS? Why sending people to come to Port Harcourt to do what?

“Are they saying that the DSS is also compromised?; The Army is compromised and the Police is compromised and the only people that are not compromised is INEC?. I find that very ridiculous to believe.”

 Wali, who expressed regrets that the current political atmosphere in the state has created factions within the traditional institution in the state, said a lot of people no long come to Port Harcourt for either for business or holiday.

“Truly speaking, I have noticed that people are getting too emotional about this conversation and paying less regards to what the facts are. The more we continue getting emotional and pedestrian; we will never get to solve this issue.”

He lamented that because of the delay in releasing the remaining results of the election, so much bad blood have been generated in the state, thus creating a volatile atmosphere which is not conducive for businesses to thrive.

“If you follow what is trending on Facebook or social media generally, you will not bother coming to Port Harcourt. People think that people are just being killed every day and people are dying every day and that we are all mad people in Rivers State.”

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