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‘They came with threats, money’ — Abia REC speaks on collation of guber results

‘They came with threats, money’ — Abia REC speaks on collation of guber results
March 29
18:56 2023

Nnenna Oti, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) returning officer in the Abia state governorship election, says some politicians approached her with money during the collation of the results.

Alex Otti, candidate of the Labour Party (LP) was declared the winner of the Abia governorship election after polling 175,467 votes to defeat Okey Ahiwe, his closest rival and candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), who scored 88,529 votes.

INEC had suspended the collation of results in Abia after thugs invaded its office in Obingwa LGA. The assailants held the INEC officials hostage before they were released, prompting the electoral commission to call for a review of the process.

But the suspension created tension among stakeholders in the state and fueled accusations of attempts to manipulate the result.

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Speaking on Tuesday while being welcomed by the management and students of the Federal University of Technology Owerri, Oti, who is the vice-chancellor, said she received threats during the collation process.

The REC said she stood by her decision to ensure that the will of the people of Abia prevailed.

“As an electoral officer, I have never in my life participated in any election, but duty came calling, I made my enquiries from Abuja and I said if I perish, I perish,” Oti said.

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“They came with their threats, they came with their money, they came with their intimidation.

”I didn’t start today; I stand here before God, I have never defrauded anyone. I declared the riot act as follows: Under me, votes must count. Under me, the people’s mandate will be upheld because I, Professor Nnnena Oti, can never do evil.”

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