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Nigeria: #NigeriaDecides2023 – Yiaga Confirms 15 Cases of Vote Buying Across Eight States

Mr Ezenwa said voters were wooed and ridiculously patronised to sell their votes by politicians and party agents.

Yiaga Africa, a pro-democracy and development organisation, said it has recorded and confirmed 15 cases of vote buying and bribery across eight states in the ongoing governorship elections.

In a Saturday press conference held at the Transcorp Hilton, Abuja, Ezenwa Nwagwu, a member of Yiaga’s election analysis committee, told journalists that the think-tank deployed hundreds of observers across states.

Mr Ezenwa said voters were wooed and ridiculously patronised to sell their votes by politicians and party agents.

In Sarkin Mudu Polling Unit (016), Giade Local Government Area of Bauchi, the People Democratic Party (PDP) agents were sighted by Yiaga observers bribing accredited voters “with a thousand naira, a wrapper and a pack of spaghetti each,” he said.

“The voters hand over their ballot papers to party agents in exchange for the bribe,” the press statement read in parts. “A similar report was received from PU 006 Rangan Ward, Warji LGAof Bauchi on the distribution of wrappers, two thousand naira and a pack of spaghetti to voters.”

The statement added that agents working for the All Progressive Congress (APC) and the PDP respectively were observed sharing food, cash and alcoholic drinks with some voters in Apir market square 1, Makurdi, Benue state.

“In PU O6 Ward 05 Isoko North, Delta State, INEC officials for the polling unit received cash gift from the APC party agent present,” the statement read further. “Interference by Security Agents: A report alleging the abduction of NNPP party stakeholders by DSS operatives has been received from Bichi LGA, Kano state, where DSS operatives are reported to be arresting party agents and key stakeholders of the NNPP.”

Yiaga said it also noted several cases of infractions and non-compliance with the 2022 Electoral Act, voter intimidation and attacks and identity and ethnic division across states where elections are being held.

Governorship elections were held in 28 states while state legislative elections were held in all of Nigeria’s 36 states.

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