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Senate asks IGP to investigate Ekiti election violence

The Senate, yesterday, asked the Inspector- General of Police, Adamu Muhammed, to order a full scale investigation into last Saturday’s violent disruption of Ekiti East Constituency 1 State Assembly bye – election, leading to the death of about three persons while many were injured.

The apex legislative Assembly, made the resolution following a motion by Senator Biodun Olujinmi (PDP, Ekiti South), entitled ‘Election violence in Ekiti: Need to eschew restraint’. The Senate said the investigation was to apprehend and prosecute the perpetrators of the dastard act, to serve as deterrent to others.

It also urged the Federal Government to ensure safety of electoral officials, security personnelandelectionmaterials during elections, and called on the National Assembly to accelerate the passage of the Electoral Act amendment Bill to forestall futureoccurrences. TheUpperChambercalled for immediate establishment of the Electoral Offences Tribunal, and urged for a shoot at sight order on any person attempting to snatch ballot box in future election.

Olujinmi, who witnessed the violence in her Ward 7 but narrowly escaped death, narrated how a voter, a nursing mother police officer were shot and a youth corps member and others suffered various degrees of injuries from gunshots. She commended the Ekiti StateGovernor, KayodeFayemi, forhisquickresponsewhichled to arrest of a few perpetrators who were currently at the correctionalcentres. She said: “No election is worth the blood of any Nigerian as democracy is the government of the people and the people should be allowed to make their choices through their votes.” Other senators that contributed to the motion vehemently condemned the violence and insisted that such issues must be addressed in the proposed amendment to the Electoral Act 2010. Senator Opeyemi Bamidele (APC, Ekiti Central), while supporting the motion, said that all politicians should be reminded that no position is worth the blood of any human being and that they should caution their supporters to always toe the path of peace in the conduct of elections.

Senator Kabiru Gaya (APC, Kano South), assured that issues surrounding electoral violence were already receiving serious attention in the Amendment process to the Electoral Act. Senator Nicholas Tofowomo (Ondo South), suggested that a judicial panel of inquiry should visit Omuo Ekiti, to assess the level of damage and injuries inflicted o innocent Nigerians during the ugly incident.

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