FOLLOWING the interception of a suspected All Progressives Congress, APC, syndicate by the police for alleged printing of fake result sheets, the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, in Rivers State has dissociated itself from the crime. Making the denial yesterday in Port Harcourt, the Resident Electoral Commissioner, REC, Elder Aniedie Ikoiwaak, explained the extent of the commission’s preparedness for the rerun election. On alleged connivance with the APC in the printing of the fake result sheets, Elder Ikoiwaak, said “it was not so.” “Why should anyone link us with the printing of fake result sheets? It amounts to giving a dog a bad name just to hang it. The Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, keeps custody of electoral materials and we do not have access to it, unless during the election, and in the presence of others, including (you) journalists. Also, our electoral materials are printed outside Nigeria. Or when a crime suspect is caught with a fake currency, do you hold the CBN governor responsible for it”, he querried. He said he would not join issues with anybody. On the extent of its preparedness, the REC affirmed that the re-run election holds on December 12, maintaining that it is carrying out sufficient sensitisation campaigns already. He also stated that the commission had already informed the affected political parties, but assured that there will be a major stakeholders’ meeting in due time, even as it is
reaching out to them. “Notice that the election in question is a supplementary and not a new one, and the parties are aware and awaiting same. It was suspended due to violence.’’ It would be recalled that the Rivers State Police, on Saturday, busted a fake result sheets printing syndicate in Port Harcourt. The Printing Press, Help-Mate Consult, located at 12 Isiokpo Street D-Line Port Harcourt, was printing fake result sheets for seven local government areas of Rivers South-East when the police stormed the facility upon a tip-off by a concerned Nigerian. Mr Magnus Abe is the Rivers South- East APC candidate for the rerun election. It was also reported that a prominent member of the APC from Opobo/Nkoro Local Government Area, Atonye Peters, claimed that the printing contract was given to him by Mr Emma Chinda, an APC leader and former Commissioner for Agriculture under former Governor Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi. According to him, the printing press has already completed two sets for two local government areas before the police got wind of the illegal act. He was arrested alongside three of his staff, Richard Koko from Okrika, Nanee Godday from Khana and Tammy Garrick. Items recovered include state-of-the-art printing machine and computers. The police also recovered INEC result sheets serial number booklets, which the printer used to authenticate the result sheets.

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