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A National Youth Corps member, Jamiu Aremu, who was part of the ad-hoc staff of the Independent National Electoral Commission in Lagos State, has lamented over the brutality he suffered at the hands of voters protesting against the failure of the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System to upload results during the governorship and state House of Assembly elections in the state.

Aremu, while narrating his ordeal to PUNCH Metro, said the encounter left him with swollen and bruised lips and bloodied eyes, among others.

It was learnt that Aremu, alongside other INEC ad hoc staff, were attending to votes at Polling Unit 082 in the Okota area of the state when they experienced difficulties in using the BVAS machine to upload the results.

In a bid to ensure transparency in the electoral process, the corps member said he asked party agents at the polling unit to follow him to the INEC office where he could get an alternative means to upload the results.

Noting that the party agents did not oppose the suggestion, Aremu said the voters protested against the suggestion and accused him of attempting to use the claim on the faulty BVAS to manipulate the outcome of the results.

He, however, noted that the angry voters descended on him as he and his colleagues attempted to leave the polling unit for the INEC office.

Jamiu Aremu

Aremu said, “At the end of the voting, I calculated the votes and I gave the party agents their copies of the result. The situation then became tense when we wanted to start uploading the results. I don’t know what happened to the BVAS machine, but it was complaining about the camera quality.

“This happened around 9pm and I assumed that it was because it was dark. So, I told them I could not upload the results and suggested that the agents should follow me to our centre so that we can get it done over there.

“Immediately I made the announcement, I left with my two other colleagues to join the bus. My colleagues thought I had joined the other bus but some of the voters cornered me and insisted that I must upload the result. I tried to call the military officers that accompanied us but they could not hear me as they also left with the buses.

“At that point, some people started slapping me; they collected my two phones and prevented me from calling for help. They also accused me of collecting N13m to claim that the machine was faulty.”

Aremu said the angry voter took him to a dark spot away from the polling unit to brutalise him, adding that it took the intervention of some policemen who stormed the premises to rescue him from the mob.

He added, “When the policemen arrived, they fired two shots and the people dispersed. That was how they were able to rescue me. It was not too long before the military men also came and that was how the police handed me over to them. They were the ones that took me to the INEC office in Oshodi Local Government secretariat.

“When I got there, I was told to go and treat myself and bring the medical bill. My face was swollen with a bloodied eye. I could not sleep that night as my body was aching. The following day, I went to a private hospital to treat myself but the INEC officials told me to get myself treated in a government hospital. When I eventually got there, I was told to get a police report which I did yesterday.”

The spokesperson for INEC in the state, Nike Oriowo, said the case was reported to the commission.

She said, “The Electoral Officer in Oshodi/Isolo Local Government said the corps member was attended to and given rendered support. She also informed him to come to the office on Friday.

“We told our officers during a meeting on Wednesday to look into the wellbeing of the corps members that were involved in the exercise. We will not allow any one of them who were maltreated to be left unattended. According to the electoral officer, the police have started investigating the incident.”

However, the state Police Public Relations Officer, SP Benjamin Hundeyin, could not be reached for comment as calls made to his number were not answered.

He had yet to reply to a text message sent to his mobile number as of the time of filing this report.

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Three Killed While Travelling To Attend Inauguration Of New Ebonyi Governor, Nwifuru




The victims who hailed, from Izzi Local Government Area, the home town of the new governor, Francis Nwifuru, were said to have died in a ghastly motor accident on their way to Abakaliki.

Three persons travelling to attend Monday’s swearing-in ceremony in Abakaliki, the Ebonyi State capital, Southeast Nigeria, have reportedly been killed.

The victims who hailed, from Izzi Local Government Area, the home town of the new governor, Francis Nwifuru, were said to have died in a ghastly motor accident on their way to Abakaliki.

Although the details of the accident were still sketchy, reports claimed many others also sustained varying degrees of injury.

According to one report, the vehicle carrying the victims had gone to Izzi to pick up villagers. Unfortunately, while they were travelling from the local government area to Abakaliki, one of the car tyres was deflated. 

Those injured in the accident have reportedly been moved to the Ebonyi Federal Teaching Hospital in Abakaliki.

The swearing-in ceremony in the state, like it is happening across the country today (Monday), is holding at the Pa Ngele Oruta Township Stadium, Abakaliki.

Meanwhile, efforts made by SaharaReporters to speak with the State Police Public Relations Officer SP, Onome Onovwakpoyeya, were unsuccessful as she didn’t answer her calls.

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Enugu Governor, Mbah Names Chidiebere Onyia SSG



Professor Chidiebere Onyia

The Governor of Enugu State, Dr Peter Mbah has appointed Professor Chidiebere Onyia as the new Secretary to the State Government, SSG.

The appointment was announced in a statement personally signed by the Governor on Monday and released to the press by his media office.

Until his appointment, Prof. Onyia was the Managing Director of the United Kingdom Nigeria Infrastructure Facility.

He was also the Lead strategy advisor for the Federal Government of Nigeria, World Bank Group Power Sector Recovery Programme, and has over the years rendered services to different international organizations and countries, among them the United Nations, Germany and Russia.

Prof. Onyia is a visiting Professor of Education at the Godfrey Okoye University, Enugu, a former visiting Professor at the University of Nigeria Nsukka, and serves on the Governing Council of two private Nigerian universities.

He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Biological Sciences, a Master’s degree in Curriculum and Instruction, Masters of Business Administration degree and a Doctorate degree in Educational Leadership.

He also had a post-doctoral scholarship in Education Policy from the Ivy League Peabody College, Vanderbilt University.

Prof. Onyia, with over 25 years of experiences in leadership, innovation, strategy, institutional reforms and research, has received numerous international and national awards and accolades for leadership excellence and for his outstanding contributions to the education sector. He is well published and a certified educational consultant, researcher, presenter, mentor and author of many books.

Prof. Onyia was a member of the Transition Committee, the technical committee that developed an actionable plan for the Peter Mbah administration, based on his manifesto and social contract with the people of Enugu State.

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Abia Governor, Otti Summons All Perm Secs To Meeting



Abia State Governor, Alex Chioma Otti has invited all Permanent Secretaries in the State civil service to a crucial meeting today, Tuesday.

The Governor made this known in a press release signed by Mr Ferdinand Ekeoma, his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity.

Ekeoma said that the meeting will be held at Michael Okpara auditorium in Umuahia.

The reason for the first official meeting was not disclosed, but it may not be unconnected with the Governor’s plans to reform the State’s civil service as contained in his inaugural broadcast.

Also the issue of salary arrears of civil servants which caused a three-week strike, may also be deliberated during the meeting.

Otti had during his inaugural speech abolished the dichotomy between core and non-core civil servants, saying that all civil servants would receive equal treatment in payment of salaries.

“We will treat all workers in the State as equal and none will be denied salaries while the other will be paid as it was done by the immediate past administration,” Otti had declared n his speech on Monday.

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