From Fred Itua, Abuja
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has voided the 3-man ward ad hoc Delegates Congress of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) conducted on April 30 at the 305 wards in Imo State.
In an eight-page report on the Imo State PDP 3-man Ward Delegate Congress scheduled for Imo State on April 30 signed by the Resident Electoral Commissioner, Imo State, Prof. Francis Ezeonu, and which listed the observation of the Commission in each of the 27 Local Government Areas in the State, the Commission concluded that “Given the above, the PDP Imo State Congress will not be said to have substantially complied with the relevant laws and guidelines guiding the conduct of ward congress for the election of delegates.”
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While some party officials in some of the Local Government Areas claimed to have done consensus or affirmation or harmonization, the Commission rejected that on the basis that the process adopted by the Party violated the provisions of the Electoral Act.
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The report states: “it is pertinent to state that consensus/affirmation is one of the methods approved for the selection of candidates or delegates. However, even when parties have agreed to adopt the consensus method, proper Congresses should be held to affirm the chosen candidates or delegates in a free, fair and credible process. This was observed in the breach in this instance.”
The report also confirmed earlier reports that there were no original result sheets brought to the Congress venues and also corroborated that the result sheets for Ideato North and Ideato South were missing and were not seen by any person and also were not among the twenty-five result sheets deposited with the State Command of the SSS by the PDP.
“In almost all the instances the monitors claimed that no original result was brought to the venues. The absence of materials including the sensitive ones (result sheets) as reported by all the electoral officers in all the ward venues where the congress was to hold cast a lot of doubts on the exercise,” the report concluded.