The Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) has said Saturday’s governorship election in Ondo State was marred by irregularities and widespread violence that either scared away many voters or significantly affected voting in many polling units.
In a statement issued on Saturday by its National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, from the the party’s Election Situation Room, ACN said the violence was caused by inadequate security, as most of the security agents deployed for the election were only able to effectively cover the urban areas, inadvertently leaving the rural areas thinly secured and paving the way for thugs to have a free rein.
The statement also stated that the delay and inadequacy of election materials and the absence of election officials in many polling units, especially in the rural areas, did not create a conducive environment for a free, fair and credible election.
The party said long before voting started, it had been warning about the violence in many areas, including Idanre, Okitipupa and Owo, where some top government functionaries in the State were allegedly arrested after they were found with six AK-47 guns in the early hours of the day.
ACN said the general impression about the election being largely devoid of violence stemmed from the fact that media coverage was concentrated on the urban areas, whereas most of the violence was perpetrated in the rural areas.