C’River senatorial by-election: Odey picks PDP ticket as Jarigbe, Ikem kick

 [From ANIEKAN ANIEKAN, Calabar]

Executive Chairman of the Cross River State Universal Basic Education Board, Stephen Odey has emerged flag bearer of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for the October 31 elections.

Odey polled 450 votes to his closest rival, Hon. Jarigbe Agom who scored 90 votes.

However, Agom Jarigbe one of the candidates for the elections has rejected the results saying its a nullity.

Rt Hon Jarigbe Aģom Jarigbe, said he rejects the result as so many delegates were excluded and said he would take appropriate steps in seeking redress.

Also speaking, the former PDP National Publicity Secretary, Venatius Ikem, Esq, commented that ‘what transpired was not a true reflection of a party primary because even Hon Jarigbe had to leave when he noticed the irregularities.’

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Ikem, who was also an automatic delegate from Obudu, alleged that some fake delegates were brought in from the backdoor just as officials from Government House and security agents manhandled delegates.

Meanwhile violence dogged the conduct of the primaries as at least one person was shot before the exercise commenced. 

Besides this, delegates and journalists were tear gassed and harassed as policemen and security men unleashed mayhem in the by elections.

Cross River State Chairman of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) Comrade Victor Udu, who led the delegation condemned the mayhem that preceded the exercise.

Udu said: “I have not seen anything near this scale before where the security men refuse to recognise anybody even when journalists identified themselves with their tags.

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“The security men said they were out on a mission it’s a shame.

“It’s deplorable that in a Senatorial by elections it could degenerate to this level. It’s indeed unfortunate and a shame to our democracy.

“The policeman pointed a gun at journalists and said every other person is an enemy and immediately opened teargas on us and we scampered for safety.

“This warning is especially for the security agencies. If after this exercise, or during the exercise I hear or see that my members are being threatened then we will take it up with Nigeria Police”, he said.

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