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Apathy, late arrival of materials mar Imo LG poll

Apathy, late arrival of materials mar Imo LG poll

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GIBSON ACHONU with agency reports

General apathy and late arrival of electoral materials at polling centres characterised the Saturday local government election in Imo State.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that motorists and traders in Owerri, the state capital, flouted the movement restriction order of the state government.

There was free movement of vehicles while the roadside markets in Owerri, were freely patronised by residents in defiance to the order.

Vehicles conveying election materials to the polling units did not leave the offices of the Imo State Independent Electoral Commission as of 9:45 am on Saturday.

At Uzii primary school ward 5A in Owerri Municipal, there was heavy presence of security personnel and a few voters at 9:50 am but no election material had arrived.

One of the voters, at the polling unit, Mr. Justus Merenini said he was there for over two hours did not to see any ISIEC official or election material.

Traders at the Relief and Amakohia Markets in Owerri were unperturbed about the restriction of movement order as they engaged in their businesses.

Mrs. Rose Ezeanya, a teacher, told NAN in Amakohia that the election was the “least of the people’s problems,” faulting the timing of the poll.

Ezeanya wondered why the state government did not use the funds for the elections to pay the arrears of salaries owed workers in the state.

Joel Azuonye told NAN in Umulogho Ward 4 at the Obowo council area at 1: pm. that he and other voters had been waiting without seeing any electoral officer.

NAN reports that in Umuariam Ward 2, also in Obowo, the situation was the same at 1: 20 pm.

SUNDAY PUNCH correspondent, who monitored the exercise, noted that the poll was held without other political parties participating.

Although no directive was given to them to boycott the election, the All Progressives Grand Alliance, the Peoples Democratic Party and other political parties, boycotted the poll.

The Imo State Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Damian Opara said there was a court injunction which restrained the conduct of the LG election in the state.

He said, “We are not involved in the election because of the subsisting Supreme Court injunction stopping the conduct of the election till when the case it decided.”

A chieftain of APGA in the state, Chief Josiah Onuegbu, told SUNDAY PUNCH that his party and others had no business participation in the poll

He said, “Why should APGA and other parties be involved in the election when the result had already been written, they are only carrying out the exercise to fulfil all righteousness.”

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