By Inyali Peter, Calabar
Youths in Egbung, Ogoja local government area of Cross River State alongside an unnamed local taskforce have apprehended a commercial truck loaded with Independent National Electoral Commission, (INEC) ballot papers and computer hard drives.
The truck with registration number Enugu UNN 148 XA was conveying the materials out of the state to an unknown destination.
The truck according to an eye witness, Elijah Ugani, reporter with Cross River based online news medium, CrossRiverwatch was stopped by the youths during routine check of vehicles plying the highway in the community.
He said that “When the truck was opened, it was loaded with unused ballot papers belonging to Boki local government are of Cross River State for 2015 State Constituency election, as well as computer hard drives and other secretariat documents.
“The driver said he had authority of INEC to move them from Calabar where he claimed he was coming from. But he wasn’t sure where he was going. He first said he was going to INEC headquarters in Abuja. He later said he was going from local government to local government to mop them up. Not long after, he said he was going to Abakaliki then lasty claimed that he was only moving them to Onitsha for one Emmanuel Kalu, who is the buyer.
So it was obvious that something is fishy and the truck has been arrested by the youths”.
Resident Electoral Commissioner, REC in Cross River, Frankland Briyai, when contacted deny knowledge of the truck and the purported directive to move around.
While saying that the state electoral commission has received directives to destroy all unused ballots papers, he added that he has further directed that such remaining papers should be transferred from other parts of the state to the capital, Calabar for destruction.
The REC wondered why a truck was now moving same out of the state and said he was not aware of the truck and the movement.
He vowed to investigate the incident.
A source said that Police from Ogoja Area Command have been invited to the scene and the youths are still holding the truck at the time of filing this report.