A truckload of about 3,600 ballot boxes was on Tuesday intercepted in Ogun State by soldiers attached to the 35 Artillery Brigade, Alamala, Abeokuta.
The Ogun State Police Command spokesperson, Muyiwa Adejobi, confirmed this to journalists.
Mr. Adejobi said the driver of the truck and exhibits recovered were handed over to the command.
He said the suspect and the boxes were seized at the Odogbolu axis of the Sagamu-Ijebu-Ode Expressway .It was also gathered that the ballot boxes had been stuffed with ballot papers and were being taken to Akwa-Ibom State before they were intercepted.
Mr. Adejobi said a team of soldiers (OP MESA) attached to 35 Artillery Brigade, Alamala intercepted a vehicle at the Odogbolu axis of the Sagamu-Ijebu-One expressway containing about 3,600 ballot boxes.
”After they couldn’t ascertain the authenticity of the ballot boxes, they (the soldiers ) handed them over to the Police at the Ijebu-Ode Area Command to commence our investigation,” Mr. Adejobi said.
”Right now, we have 3,600 ballot boxes belonging to the Independent National Electoral Commission., INEC. Some top officials of INEC and at wharf have called us to say that the consignment belonged to INEC and that the ballot boxes are meant for the INEC office at Uyo, Akwa-Ibom.
”The INEC official said that the contractor or agent would come to the Police headquarters with relevant documents to clarify the authenticity of the vehicle.
”The items are with us at the command while we are waiting for the relevant documents of the items.”
Mr. Adejobi said it was too early to link any political party or politicians to the development as the investigation was still at an early stage.
“It is too early for us to say that those items are illegal but with information we have, we have been told they are owned by INEC,” he said. “If we cannot see those documents to verify, we will take the necessary steps.”
On a report that there were three trucks with two escaping, Mr. Adejobi said he was only aware of one.
“I am aware of just one vehicle which contains 3,600 ballot boxes,” he said. “One person is in custody in connection with the vehicle and if there are more than one vehicle, our officers are on the road to apprehend them.”
”An original document was tendered and from security agents and governmental agencies particularly INEC. All documents that we have are pointing towards INEC as the owner but we are not relying on that,” he said.