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Go To Local Govt Offices To Inspect Ballot Papers Used For 2023 Polls- INEC REC Tells Political Parties

The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, said it is calmly observing the ongoing battle between the All Progressives Congress, APC and the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, over the inspection of material used for for conduct of the 2023 elections in the state and Certified True Copies of documents used in declaration of same polls.

INEC, which disclosed this in a statement in Port Harcourt Monday, noted that the inspection and access to CTCs were legitimate rights of political parties, adding that process on getting same must be duly followed.

The Resident Electoral Commissioner, Rivers State, Dr. Johnson Alalibo Sinikiem, in the statement he personally signed, noted that the commission has received over 50 applications in respect of CTCs.

Sinikiem said: “The Commission has observed with equanimity the unfolding events in the past few days concerning the issuance of Certified True Copies of election materials and access for inspection of election materials used during the just concluded 2023 General Elections in Rivers State. Although the application of Certified True Copies of documents and access for inspection of election materials are the legitimate entitlement of Candidates and Parties to Election Petitions, these are however governed by processes and procedures which include payment of requisite fees, making copies/photocopies of relevant documents and certification by the authorized official of the Commission.

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“The Commission has received nearly fifty (50) of these applications since the conclusion of the Presidential, National Assembly, Governorship and State Assembly elections Rivers State and a good number of these applications have been processed in accordance with the date of receipt of such applications and payment of certification fees.

This process is still on-going.”

Sinikiem regretted that political parties have refused to go to the local government area offices to check inspect the documents, advising all parties to go to the local government offices to inspect the ballot papers used for the polls.

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He said: “The Commission has also advised all applicants to visit our Local Government offices where these documents are domiciled for inspection while we work out modalities for inspection of other documents domiciled at the State office in accordance with available spaces but they insisted that the huge volumes of documents like ballot papers be brought to the state office.”The REC, however, assured all applicants and the general Public that the Commission is committed to discharging its constitutional and lawful duties without preferences or bias.


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