A socio political group in Abia state, All Citizens Forum, has accused Civil Society Organizations and election observers who covered the April 11 governorship and state Assembly polls in the state of working for the interest of the governorship candidate of the All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA), Dr. Alex Otti.
The group who said it was shocked at the position of a group of civil society organizations and election observers calling for the outright cancellation of the governorship election in three local government areas of Abia State; Obingwa, Osisioma Ngwa and Isiala Ngwa North when there was no reason for such call.
Addressing journalists in Aba, Chairman and Secretary of the group, Chief Solomon Nwaigwe and Barr. Chukwuemeka Eriugo, respectively, accused the Justice Development Peace and Commission (JDPC), Society for Economic Rights & Social Justice (SERSJ), Human Rights, Justice & Peace Foundation (HRJPF), and Centre for citizens with Disabilities (CCD) and Foundation for Environmental Rights, Advocacy and Development (FENRAD) of acting the script written by the APGA candidate.
“We are shocked at the position of the civil society groups and election observers in Abia state who obviously working for the APGA governorship candidate in Abia state, Dr. Alex Otti, have been granting interviews and issuing statements calling for the cancellation of the governorship elections in Obingwa, Osisioma Ngwa and Isiala Ngwa local governments when there is no need for such cancellations.
“We are also worried that a so called election observer group could descend low to the level of playing the script of partisanship. We commend INEC for refusing to be deceived by this brazen show of bias by these groups in monitoring the governorship polls in Abia state.”
The group warned INEC to check the background of the civil society groups who it accredits to monitor elections in order not to bring confusion into the country’s electoral process as the election monitors have done in Abia state.
“Ahead of the April 25 supplementary polls in Abia state, INEC should take every necessary step to re-check the background of election observers to protect the integrity of the election. Our investigations revealed that some of these election observers are paid agents of the APGA candidate. Some of them relied on hear say information and never stepped foot into any of the three local government areas where they want elections cancelled. Again , we are not unaware of a so called international election observer who was later traced to hail from Dr. Alex Otti’s home town in Arochukwu.,” the group said.
Recall that the civil society groups in a statement signed by their spokesmen; Leonard Onyemeri, Innocent Nkwocha, Cassius Ukwugbe, Nnanna Nwafor and David Anyaele have called for the cancellation of the election held in Obingwa, Osisioma Ngwa and Isiala Ngwa North local government areas over alleged electoral malpractices.