Edo LG Rerun: Oshiomhole ‘Embarrassed’ By Police Role In Aiding Electoral Fraud

adams_oshiomhole_455297545Governor Adams Oshiomhole of Edo State has expressed disgust at the role of the Nigeria Police in the recently concluded Esan North East Local Government election held in the state.

Specifically, the governor accused the police of aiding ballot box snatching, supervising electoral fraud and intimidating voters in the election which held on Tuesday.

Speaking at the swearing in of the council Chairman, Mr. Sam Oboh, at the Government House in Benin City, the Edo State capital on Wednesday, Mr. Oshiomhole said: “I am embarrassed that the police have become electoral officials. What I heard yesterday and I am still investigating and if the reports are correct, then Nigerians should be put on notice that the Police may well have chosen to become the INEC or EDSIEC officials and have chosen to overthrow those who are authorised by law to conduct elections.

“As a Nigerian, I am embarrassed that the police are involved in carrying electoral materials, arresting EDSIEC returning officers and coercing them into a police station and converting it into a collation centre supervised by policemen imported from Abuja and Lagos in other to subvert the will of the people of Esan North East.

“As a civilised man, I felt ashamed that men in uniform at rather very senior level supervised this criminal act of the police in yesterday’s (Tuesday) election.”

The governor further alleged that a serving minister, whose name he did not mention and other federal officials, including lawmakers, used their exalted positions, taking unfair advantage of the police assigned to protect them and deployed them for election purpose, detaining returning officers and treating them as if they were prisoners of war and compelling them to append their signatures on fake election results.

Gov. Oshiomhole noted that the law establishing the electoral commission was clear and that nowhere was it stated that a police post was an electoral office.

“Law enforcement officers led by a Commissioner of Police were involved in converting a police post to an electoral centre. It is an embarrassment. No one will live forever but our reputation will live after us. Edo State, under my watch will not submit to intimidation.”

“Anyone who is under the illusion that they can use the instrument of coercion to intimidate us is a poor student of history. We are at our best when we are challenged. I want to appeal to federal authorities and the security agencies to remain faithful to their oath of office,” he said.

Reacting, the Edo State Police Public Relations Officer, DSP Moses Eguavoen said he was yet to get full details of Mr. Oshiomhole’s allegation and promised that once he did, the police would come out with a robust response on a later date.

-Daily Sun