The national leadership of All Progressives Congress, APC, has requested the Independent National Electoral Commission to set aside its declaration that the governorship election in Taraba State was inconclusive.
According to the party, what the electoral umpire ought to have done was to cancel the results of 11 local government areas, where it claimed large scale electoral fraud was perpetrated, after which, a fresh collation should be done and a winner declared.
National Chairman of the party, Chief John Oyegun, made the demand in Abuja on Thursday.
Oyegun spoke during a press briefing by the party’s governorship candidate in the state, Senator Aisha Alhassan, on the botched election.
Oyegun pointed out that after receiving briefings from its candidate in the race, it was convinced that there was a high powered conspiracy by “powers that be” to thwart the will of Taraba people, who voted massively for Alhassan, a woman.
Earlier, Alhassan had said the APC was only demanding justice because it was evident that the outcome of the election in the affected local government areas was fraudulent.
She said, “INEC should set aside the declaration of inconclusive result for Taraba State. The results of all the areas affected by irregularities in the 11 local governments should be cancelled out rightly, after which a fresh collation should be done and a winner declared.
“Alternatively, the result of the entire State should be cancelled and a fresh election conducted. This is in view of the widespread irregularities in most of the Local Government Areas of the State.
“In the event that the overall result is cancelled and a fresh election ordered, such should not be conducted under the supervision of the current INEC officials in Taraba State, as they have shown sufficient evidence of bias and complicity in the April 11 election. A total overhaul of the INEC in Taraba should be a pre-requisite for any fresh election in the state.
“The national headquarters of INEC should immediately launch a probe into the conduct of the April 11 governorship election in Taraba to ensure that the rights of the people of Taraba State to choose their leaders are not abridged by conniving INEC officials, security and desperate PDP members”.
The APC flag bearer listed the affected local government areas as Wukari, Kurmi, Yorro, Karim Lamido, Ardo Kola, Sardauna, Zing, Bali, Lau, Donga and Takum.
In a terse response, the Taraba State Commissioner of Information and Strategy, Emmanuel Bello, dismissed the allegations leveled against the Peoples Democratic Party, saying the APC was only afraid of imminent defeat.
“The APC is only being jittery and desperate because it knows that it can’t win this election in a predominantly PDP state like Taraba”, Bello said.