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LP, AA PROTEST OVER NAMES, LOGOS OMISSION ON BALLOT PAPERS

By NBF News
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PIQUED by alleged exclusion of the party's name and logo on the ballot, aggrieved members of the Action Alliance (AA) on Monday protested to Oyo State office of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

The state chairman of the party, Tunde Anifowose-Kelani, who spoke with journalists on the development, expressed concern that the party's teeming supporters who participated in the botched National Assembly polls last weekend discovered that the AA was omitted by name and logo on the ballot papers.

Anifowose-Kelani faulted INEC for the blunder and vowed to fight it to a logical end.

Also, the Labour Party (LP) candidate for Lagos Central Senatorial District, Dapo Durosinmi-Etti and the party's House of Representatives candidates in Somolu and Eti-Osa, Adegboyega Salau and Abdul Latif Muse, have drawn the attention of Chairman of INEC, Attahiru Jega, to the omission of the party's logo on the ballot papers in the areas in the aborted elections of last Saturday, April 2.

According to Salau, the omission also occurred in Surulere, Ikorodu and Ifako Ijaye.

Durosinmi-Etti and Muse spoke at a media conference in Lagos while fielding questions on the shelved National Assembly election.

Anifowose-Kelani said: 'There is no court ruling against our participation in the election. INEC is disenfranchising us. We will fight this to a logical conclusion. If election is held without our name and logo on the ballot papers, such election will be a waste and nullity. Our name should be included in the ballot papers because we have candidates contesting the election on our platform across the country. In Oyo State alone, we have about 54 candidates vying for various elective positions'.

In a statement made available to The Guardian, Salau argued that such omissions from the ballot papers could spark violence during the polls.

He lamented that the omissions have not been given adequate attention in the media or mentioned by the INEC chairman in his announcement of the election postponement.

Salau urged Jega to rectify this error before the new date of the election.

He also appealed to the Lagos Resident Electoral Commissioner and the electoral officer in Somolu to ensure that all the units in Somolu and Bariga are supplied with ballot papers that carried the logo of all participating parties to ensure credible elections.

He urged the state security outfit to stop election in any unit where such omissions are noted.

Salau also faulted INEC for going abroad to print the ballot papers when it could be done in the country.

'It is pertinent to add that INEC does not need to go beyond the shores of this nation to print ballot papers and other voting materials as we have reputable printing companies in Somolu that can print and ensure the security of such materials', he argued.