Friday, October 2, 2015 8:55 pm
Mr Akuki Kenneth, the Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) assigned to monitor the April 11 governorship poll in Rivers state said on Friday that the election in the state was peaceful.
Kenneth, who is also the area commander in nine local government councils of the state, testified before the Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal for Rivers sitting in Abuja.
The ACP who was subpoenaed by the tribunal to testify said there was no disruption of voting in the nine local government area that he supervised.
“We commenced the first phase of our patrol around 7: 30 a. m and ended it up 11 a. m while the second phase of the patrol commenced at 1:30 p.m.
“During the period, I went round my area of coverage and I was also in constant touch with my men at Cinema and Bonny highland area.
“At the places we visited, INEC documents arrived there early and there were no threat to security or any violence.
Kenneth said the councils under his supervision on the election’s day were, Khana, Gokana, Okirika, Ogu/Bolo, Eleme, Bonny, Opobo /Nkoro, Andoni and Tai.
He said from the report he got from the officers he dispatched to various area under his jurisdiction, the election was peaceful and there was no threat to life.
The witness described as “falsehood’’ an earlier testimony of one DSP Yusuf Buba, before the tribunal.
He alleged that Buba of the Mobile Police Force who had earlier testified for the All Progressive Congress (APC) lied on oath.
Kenneth said that Buba was only deployed to the INEC office in Bori to provide security.
He contended that under the police disciplinary procedure, the witness ought to be sanctioned for his claim that he left his duty post to monitor the election in other areas.
The witness also denied the allegations that security men were seen thumb printing ballot papers and that they provided security for hoodlums who allegedly stuffed ballot boxes.
“I did not see any mass thumb printing of ballot papers as alleged and I did not see anybody removing INEC materials in Khana local government area and INEC Headquarters,’’ he said.
While being cross-examined by, Mr Akinlolu Olujimi, the counsel to the petitioner, the witness admitted that he was in charge of APC and that he did all he could to avert the ugly incidence of bomb blast at party’s campaign office.
Another witness, CSP Uche Chukwuma, told the tribunal that he was in charge of Ahoda East local government area during the election.
He also testified that the governorship election held and it was peaceful on April 11.
“On the night of April 10, I was on patrol all through, with two patrol van fully loaded with our men. On April 11, sister agencies like Nigerian prison service, immigration, FRSC, NSCDC all sent in their men to join my men. About 305 personnel were posted to me.
“I deployed my men to the 154 polling units under the local government. The local government was divided into two constituencies and I posted 110 personnel to the first one and 195 personnel to the second constituency to monitor the election.
“I did not receive any negative report on the election day from any of them,” Chukwuma said.
He insisted that there was no electoral violence in the areas he covered.