Bayelsa Election: Police, INEC Officials Flee As Violence Erupts In Sagbama
Security operatives and electoral officials deployed at some polling units in Ward 5 within Sagbama Local Government Area of Bayelsa State, fled on Saturday after fights broke out between supporters of various political parties.
According to a Twitter post by an observer group, Situation Room, the fights broke out in polling units 1,5,6 and 7.
In its tweet, the Situation Room reported that ballot boxes were broken.
It further stated that some ballot boxes were snatched and others were thrown into the river.
PU: 1,6,7, 5
There were reports of fighting in these PU’s. Ballot boxes were broken, some snatched and others thrown into the river. Police and INEC officials deserted the scene.#BayelsaSR2019 #BayelsaDecides2019 pic.twitter.com/WYG8Isj2kj
— Situation Room (@SituationRoomNg) November 16, 2019
The report from the Situation Room comes on the heels of claims by Governor Seriake Dickson of Bayelsa State that violence has marred the election in some parts of his state.
According to Governor Dickson, many electoral officials in Southern Ijaw and some other parts of Bayelsa State have been kidnapped.
Speaking after he cast his vote at his Polling Unit 5, Ward 2, Sagbama, the Governor accused security agencies of conniving with the All Progressives Congress to rig the state governorship election.
He said, “As we are speaking, in this day and age, gun-wielding militiamen, with the aid of security forces, have overrun hapless electoral officials.
“Most of the electoral officials in Southern Ijaw, as we speak, are kidnapped and held hostage.”
Governor Dickson said it is very sad that no election was held in Southern Ijaw.
He called on President Buhari to act and ensure that security operatives work in the best interest of the Bayelsa people.
“Way forward, I call on the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, even though he has decided to look the other way since 2015.
“The President has to wake to do something. This is not a democracy. The observers are here and they know what is going on.
”I call on the President to call the security forces to order. I call on the IG of Police to do his duty to protect the people of Bayelsa State.”
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