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Ondo poll: INEC tasks political parties on security

INEC in Ondo State says there will be no by-election in Ilaje/Ese-Odo Federal Constituency unless political parties guarantee security.

The Resident Electoral Commissioner in the state, Mr Akin Orebiyi, stated this on Tuesday in Akure at a meeting to give parties an update on the inconclusive election.

INEC had conducted a by-election on April 5 to replace Mr Raphael Nomiye who died on Nov. 21, 2013.

The commission, however, declared the exercise inconclusive, saying more than 7,000 people were unable to vote as a result of violence in some wards.

Orebiyi said the meeting was to enable the commission and parties agree on the conduct of the election.

Contributing, a Labour Party chieftain, Mr Banji Okunomo, expressed dissatisfaction over the inconclusive election.

Okunomo claimed that his party had majority of the lawful votes cast during the by-election and faulted INEC for not declaring its candidate winner of the poll.

He, however, said a case on the issue had been instituted at the Federal High Court, Akure, adding that only the court could order for supplementary election if necessary.

Okunomo said polling did not take place in some areas because the residents deliberately barred electoral officers from taking election materials there.

The Chairman of the PDP in Ese-Odo Local Government Area, Mr Solomon Tunyan, had alleged that some members of a political party prevented electoral materials from getting to Ward 2 in Arugbo.

A PDP member in the area, Mr Kunle Odidi, however, commended INEC and security agencies for the “peaceful conduct of the by-election and quick delivery of electoral materials.’’

Odidi assured the commission that there would be no violence in the supplementary election.

In his remarks, the Commissioner of Police in the state, Mr Isaac Ike, said adequate security would be provided whenever the supplementary election was scheduled.

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