More than two weeks after she had gone underground, Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC Resident Electoral Commissioner, REC, in Rivers State, Mrs. Gesila Khan, yesterday reappeared in Port Harcourt, the state capital, declaring that she was still in charge of the electoral body in the state.
She said reports that she has been transferred from the state were baseless.
Khan, who was detained by the Department of State Security, DSS, over her alleged improper handling of the March/April 2015 general elections in Rivers, said that she had no regret over her role in the conduct and outcome of the polls.
The Rivers INEC boss, told reporters that because her job demands that she move when posted to another state, she was ready to do so when directed, adding that those behind her purported transfer were entitled to their views.
“I am here and I am still here. I have not been transferred. If I have been transferred, I should not be sitting here; I should be packing my things. Even if I am transferred, there is nothing wrong with that, because it is government work and anytime you are called to move, you move. But for now, I have not been called to move,” Dame Khan stated.
Khan also stated that there was nothing wrong if the commission decided to transfer her to another state, because according to her, it was part of the work, but pointed out that she had not been transferred from the state.
She said: “I have no regret whatsoever. I am a Human Resources HR practitioner; so, anything you see in life, you move along with it. You cannot predict man. They are free to think and say what they want.
Khan, whose whereabouts was unknown after her interrogation by the operatives of the DSS, disclosed that she and her team had been working round the clock to ensure that documents and materials needed at the tribunal were available.
“We do not have challenge because the staffs are willing, the visiting team is on the ground and I am here. We were here Saturday, Sunday and this means we are working.
“During the presidential election, three national commissioners came; during the governorship election, three national commissioners came and now again, we have three administrative secretaries.
“That is just to make the job fast and you know the tribunals are time-bound and the work (sorting our election materials) is voluminous. We have been working since. Today, it is either this document or another. Some they want in long hand while some they want it in short hand.
“So, the law says when they request, you give them, and since the time is very short, we have to.
“The head office (INEC Abuja) decided to draft three administrative secretaries as support staff, so that we can meet up with the time and I think you have seen them.
“We should conclude this exercise (inspection of election materials) before the tribunal comes to an end. We are humans, and if you are told to produce 1,000 copies today, you will produce them. Even machines break down, not to talk of man.”
Meanwhile, the All Progressives Congress, APC has dismissed reports that Khan was detained and interrogated for two weeks by the operatives of DSS.
The party said that, she was only invited for questioning over the elections in the state, and that she made the allegation in order to “gather public sympathy.”
The party said: “She should prove to the world that the DSS detained her for two weeks. Her allegation is misleading, malicious and unfortunate. We challenge her to show evidence that she was detained overnight.