#OsunDecides2018: Police arrest, release vote buyer

Sunday taking money from his bag to be given to electorates who had already voted...
Sunday taking money from his bag to be given to electorates who had already voted...

A vote buyer was arrested and later released by police officers in Osun State.

The buyer, identified as Sunday, was arrested at Polling Unit 03, Ward 06 of Ifedayo Local Governnment Area on Saturday.

At about 10:46am, the man was seen standing some distance away from the polling unit as he waited for registered voters to vote and confirm the party they really voted for. Mr Sunday was assisted by an older man who was closer to the voting cubicle to comfrim the electorates’ vote while he (Sunday) distributed the money.

Shortly after, the attention of the police officers around was drawn to the situation, Mr Sunday and his accomplice (who is said to be the party leader) were arrested and taken away from the vicinity in a police vehicle.

Mr Sunday, however, returned few minutes later, just after the party leader.

Several similar cases of vote buying were witnessed across Osun, where, unlike in Ekiti, the voters were not paid within the vicinity of the polling unit.

When contacted, an officer who answered the Osun Police Control Room telephone line, simply said she was not aware of the situation. She also refused to give her name.

“Please this is the control room line. We only take complaints here. I don’t know what you are talking about. Ive not heard that one,” she said.

In the same polling unit, PREMIUM TIMES also observed that there was an error on the voters registration list pasted on the wall. The polling unit code on some voters’ Permanent Voters Cards did not tally with the code written on the list pasted on the wall.

One of the electorates affected, Mr Bodunpe, said, “What I have on my PVC is that I am in Polling Unit 004, but the address is directing me to polling units 003.

“On getting to Polling Unit 003, I saw my data on the wall. I am not the only one affected. Some have voted before I came but when the population was becoming alarming, we were asked to go to Polling Unit 004 which is on our PVC. I came back here and our data couldn’t be found, we were sent back to Polling Unit 003. But when we got there, we were not allowed to vote.”

However, the Electoral Operation Support Centre (EOSC) officer in charge of the local government addressed the affected electorates, soliciting for their patience and promising to get the issue resolved before 2 p.m.

Voting was still going on across the state as at the time of this report.

A total of 48 political parties are taking part in the election.

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