There was palpable tension on Saturday morning at Ogudu collation centre over missing nine ballot booklets meant for Ward 4 in Kosofe Local Government.
The Guardian reporter, who was at the centre between 7:35 am and 8:30 am, observed that the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) agents were protesting over the missing ballot booklets.
A PDP agent, Kunle Aladiyan told newsmen that they discovered the missing booklets this morning while INEC officials were distributing election materials to each wards.
Aladiyan said they were not going to participate in the election without the missing booklets, stressing that a similar situation occurred in 2015 and they were persuaded to forget it.
“We told them while they were bringing the materials to count each carton booklets, but the INEC officials refused. ”
“That was how we lost the 2015 election. We participated in the exercise thinking it would favour us, only for the missing booklets to find their ways to the ballot. We don’t want to be fooled again,” Aladiyan alleged.
A PDP Senatorial candidate in the last National Assembly election, Sherifat Olushola-Hassan noted that the party will participate on the ground that all ballot papers belonging to Ward 4 will not be distributed.
An INEC official from Kosofe, who pleaded anonymity, said the officers that collected the materials only counted per cartons from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), stressing that if they had counted per booklet, they would have found out the missing items.
The official said the booklets of ward 4 will not be used to avoid problems.
The Area Commander of Area H Ogudu, ACP Miller Dantawaye, who led other security agencies to for the centre and Kosofe area, confirmed that he was there when they discovered the missing booklets.
Dantawaye said their duty was to provide security for the area, adding that the parties and INEC would resolve the problem.
However, police officers, DSS operatives, were detailed to the centre, while the army was sighted patrolling Ogudu road, with a view to check breakdown of law and order in the area.
It was also gathered that ad-hoc staff were seen protesting over non-payment of their last elections allowances as they were demanded their payment before going out for the gubernatorial election.