Accord Party Urges INEC To Postpone Constituency Election In Rivers
The Accord Party (AP) in Rivers State has written the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), requesting that the State Assembly Election scheduled for this Saturday in Ogba/Egbema/Ndoni Constituency 2 be postponed.
Accord Party wrote the letter to the electoral umpire due to the kidnapping of its candidate, Engr. Chukwudi Ogbonna.
Unknown gunmen abducted the Accord Party’s candidate for state assembly in ONELGA Constituency II on Tuesday night in Port Harcourt’s Rumuigbo slum.
Ogbonna is still in the kidnappers’ den two days before the house of assembly election, and his family and party members are in a panic state.
According to the chairman of the Accord Party, Comrade Nwachukwu Justice, who was addressing a peaceful demonstration at Mgbede in the Ogba/Egbema/Ndoni LGA, the party’s candidate for ONELGA Constituency 2 is yet to regain his freedom.
Justice claimed that the party has officially contacted INEC to inform the electoral body of the circumstances and requested that, should Ogbonna not be released before the election, the state assembly election for the Constituency be postponed.
He said: “Election is just two days away and our candidate is still in the den of his abductors. As a party, we are calling on the abductors to please release him to us.
“We are calling on security agents to scale up efforts to ensure his safe release before the day of the election.
“We have written INEC that if our candidate is not released until the day of the election that the election for ONELGA Constituency 2 should be suspended.”
Given the event, Ifeakachukwu Nwakiri, a relative of the victim, urged the INEC to invalidate Sections 24(1) and (2) of the Electoral Act and postpone the polls. He noted that the kidnapping is an emergency and may lead to a breakdown of peace.
He said: “The position of the family is the same as that of the party that Chukwudi Ogbonna should be released. INEC should postpone the election pending when Ogbonna is freed.
“INEC has the power to suspend the election in this place. Section 24 (1&2) of the Electoral Act, 2022, gave INEC the absolute power to postpone an election in an event of an emergency or breach of peace.
“As you can see there is an emergency and breach of peace in ONELGA Constituency 2. We are calling on them to suspend the election pending when Engr Ogbanna is released.”