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PDP, APC Supporters Clash In Port Harcourt Over Alleged Partiality Of INEC



Thousands of supporters of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the All Progressives Congress (APC), yesterday, clashed in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, over alleged partiality of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
The clash, which would have turned bloody at INEC’s office along Aba Road, was however, averted by the prompt intervention of the Police.
It was gathered that supporters of the APC had accused INEC of planning to rig the 2015 general elections in favour of the PDP, while PDP insisted that the commission was working for APC  interest.
Sources also stated that APC supporters had earlier scheduled their peace protest for yesterday, but were surprised when PDP supporters stormed the place with placards.
Some of the inscriptions on the placards carried by PDP supporters read: ‘INEC, you are working for APC,’ ‘INEC, we need a free and fair election,’ ‘We will not accept fake results,’ and ‘INEC, you are partial.’
Similarly, the placards of APC supporters read, ‘Rivers REC, are you a member of PDP?’, ‘We need unbiased umpire in Rivers,’ ‘Rivers people will resist any attempt to manipulate the electoral process,’ ‘INEC, your secret agenda with PDP has been exposed,’ and, ‘We want a free and fair election in Rivers.’
Fracas ensued between the two groups, but PDP supporters overpowered and dispossessed them of their placards, forcing APC members to flee.
Speaking to journalists, the State PDP Publicity Secretary, Mr. Samuel Nwanosike, accused INEC of recruiting card-carrying members of the APC as their ad hoc staff.
He said such a situation could mar the general elections, if not addressed.
Nwanosike said: “From the record and INEC’s position, the number of PVCs distributed in the North East, where Boko Haram had been on rampage, is on the high side. If many people have been displaced in the region, who then did INEC give the PVCs?
“Again, you can see through the utterances of the National Publicity Secretary of the APC, Lai Mohammed, that he (Mohammed) has become the spokesman of INEC.
The card reader has been faulted going by INEC’s test-run the other day, yet they (INEC) want to go ahead with it.”
Reacting to the incident, the INEC Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC), Dame Khan, said the allegations by PDP and APC supporters showed her neutrality.

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