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Controversy Trails Location Of BVAS Machines In Cross River – REC Clears Air, IPAC Kicks

 

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) Resident Electoral Commissioner(REC) in Cross River State, Professor Gabriel Yomere has promised to resign from his job if truly any BVAS machine left his office.

Naija News reports that this is as Yomere cleared the air about alleged reports that BVAS machines meant for the 2023 general election were found in the State Governor’s lodge in Calabar.

The Cross River INEC REC in a meeting with the Department of State Security (DSS) and the Inter-Party Advisory Council (IPAC) in the state over the allegation concerning the BVAS machines said INEC is the only custodian of the machines and he has taken account of those for the state.

Yomere, at the meeting, submitted that “The publication that BVAS has found its way to the government lodge under the cover of darkness, is of concern. 

“INEC is the only custodian of BVAS in Cross River, we don’t know any other body. 

“When we heard of this, we were worried because we know the Government Lodge is not a store where INEC keeps its materials. 

“I can assure you hundred per cent that, I have taken inventory of the 3,281 BVAS delivered by INEC headquarters to this state are intact, not one has been removed from this office.

“I have reported to the Police Commissioner,  and am informing members of the political community, that no BVAS left this office for any reason, if they can prove that one BVAS left this office I will resign from my job. 

“INEC is fully in control and its preparation for the conduct of the 2023 elections and has not been dented in any way.”

It was gathered that at the meeting, the Deputy Commissioner of Police, Operations, Frank Idu, who represented the Commissioner of police (CP) in the state, Balarabe Sule, affirmed that the BVAS “are all intact.”

He noted that “The security cameras dedicated to viewing the storage facility have been reviewed.  Clips from the cameras have been reviewed over the past 4-weeks and there have not been any attempts by anyone to go even close to the storage facility. 

“On the receipt of this information, measures were taken to investigate and inform the public. We have carried out our investigation, and we are telling members of the public with assurances and guarantees that nothing has happened  to the BIVAS, and that the statement published, alleging the movement of BIVAS to the Governor’s Lodge) is malicious.”

However, Naija News understands that the Cross River State chapter of the Inter-Party Advisory Council (IPAC) has refused to be convinced by the assurance of the INEC and the police until it verifies the available Bar-Codes of the BVAS machines.

The Cross River State Chairman of the IPAC, Anthony Bessong pointed out that “IPAC has its reservations about the information on social media and what we have seen here today, we are making a demand, that beyond the desire to see the BVAS, we are resulting here and now that we want to have access to every barcode that is attached to the BVAS. 

“The 3,281 barcodes attached to each of the BVAS must be sited by political party chairmen in Cross River before we can give a vote of confidence on INEC.”

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