The Abia chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has accused the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) of bias in the ongoing collation of the results of Saturday’s governorship election in the state.
The party made the accusation in a statement issued on Tuesday by its acting Publicity Secretary and Vice Chairman (Abia North), Chief Abraham Amah.
The party regretted that the audit was being carried out in the absence of its agents.
The statement, captioned, “2023 Abia Guber: INEC’s impartiality is highly questionable,” reads in part: “Abia PDP is constrained to state in very unequivocal terms that the impartiality of INEC in the ongoing collation of the 2023 Abia governorship election results is very questionable because of recent decisions it has taken to favour a particular party.
“In the process of the collation, the Labour Party (LP) prayed to INEC to audit the BVAS accreditation of Obingwa Local Government Area, which INEC graciously granted and has already started the audit. The PDP agents have been shut out of the process, while the LP agents are involved.
“But to the chagrin of PDP, its request for INEC to subject the results of Aba North, Aba South, Umuahia North, Umuahia South, Osisioma and Arochukwu has been blatantly rejected. This is a clear case of partiality on the part of INEC in favour of the LP.”
The ruling party, therefore, asked INEC to stop the audit and admit its agents into the exercise.
It further asked the commission to allow it time “to fly in its IT experts from the UK” while also asking INEC “to announce the results as they are and subject them to the judiciary for final adjudication.”
The statement added: “We also warn INEC to be mindful of the legal implications of tampering with the BVAS machines without a judicial clearance as this is clearly against the Electoral Act.”
PDP avowed that INEC’s recent behaviour is destructive to the nation’s democracy and would only serve to reverse the gains made in the past 24 years.
It warned that any attempt to subvert the popular will of the people by skewing the electoral process in favour of a particular candidate would be resisted.
The party, therefore, called on the people of the state to remain calm and peaceful, hoping that justice would prevail at the end.