The Independent National Electoral Commission has been asked to cancel the election it conducted for the Ikwuano/Umuahia Federal Constituency of Abia State over the absence of the Action Democratic Party logo on the ballot paper.
Addressing select journalists in Umuahia on Wednesday night, the ADP candidate, Paul Meregini, lamented that “there is a lot of foul play by INEC” in the Ikwuano/Umuahia Federal Constituency election.
Meregini said “I did my primaries on the 8th of June, 2022 and INEC were there and sent their report to Abuja. On the 10th of June, I uploaded the names of all the candidates (in Abia state) to the party National Secretariat in Abuja.
“That same day, our National Secretariat, Abuja uploaded the list of the candidates in the state to INEC.
“When INEC released the list, I saw that my name was missing. I immediately contacted my party National Office, Abuja and they said they are on it and advised me to go to court and which I did on the 23rd of September, 2022 at the Federal High Court, Umuahia.
“To my amazement, when the case was mentioned before the court on the 6th of October, 2022, the judge called for the case and discovered that my case file was missing in the High Court. When the judge summoned the registrar to find out why, the case file resurfaced after two hours,” he said.
“I called our National Office at Abuja and they went to find out from INEC. INEC was said to have told them that the names are hanging. Having duly informed our Abuja national office, our headquarters went to court headed by Hon. Justice B. F. M. Nyako.
“On the 23rd of November, Hon. Justice Nyako ordered INEC to open the portal for the hanging names to enter or accept the hard copy. To my amazement, instead of obeying the court, INEC went ahead to print ballot paper without the ADP logo”.
“However, the APP has no Federal House of Representatives candidate for Ikwuano/Umuahia Federal Constituency, but their logo appeared on the ballot paper. But ADP that has a candidate that conducted primaries which INEC observed, INEC did not add it, even after the court ordered them to do so.
“This is a clear disrespect to the rule of law by an established institution, INEC has to cancel the election and reprint the ballot paper which will carry ADP logo,” he said.