Polls: South East electorate, opposition parties allege intimidation, voter suppression

By Sunday Oguntuyi, Osogbo

Shooting and ballot boxes snatching by armed thugs suspected to be working for politicians have spread to some parts of Osogbo, Osun State capital.

At at the time of filing this report, hoodlums suspected to be political thugs stormed some polling units in Osogbo and allegedly scared away electorates who were on ground to cast their votes.

It was gathered that at exactly 10:35 hoodlums numbering about eight stormed polling unit 10 and 11, ward 5, Iso Pako Alekuwode area, Osogbo with gun and chased the voters aways before carting away the ballot.

One of the voters, Mrs Adeleke Toyin, told New Telegraph Correspondent that the vote had already started when the armed to teeth hoodlums invaded the area and chased away the voters.

Toyin further explained that the hoodlums were eight in number, adding that they shot sporadically into the air before they took away the ballot boxes.

“We were on the queue when they suddenly came and started shooting on the air. They chased away and took the ballot away. They came in Sienna vehicle. They were eight in number. Three of them were in the vehicle while five of them came down of the vehicle.

“When they sensed they might have be filmed they dropped the boxes and drove off the scene. They don’t want us to exercise our civic rights but we would resist every attempt to disenfranchise us

Other units where ballot boxes were carted away by the hoodlums are ward 4, polling unit 17 and 32.

A PDP party agent, Adeyemi Adedayo, unit 10 was said to have joined hands with others at the polling unit to prevent the armed thugs from taking the ballot box away.

It was gathered that the invaders were however prevented from going away with the ballot box.

Also, suspected political thugs allegedly destroyed ballot boxes and chased away voters in unit 3 ward 17 Oja Tuntun area in Ife Central area of Osun State.

At the unit, over 30 women protested during the ugly attack by the thugs .

Narrating the ugly incident, the women who were almost weeping while speaking with Newsmen said hoodlums have denied them their rights to vote .

They were seen protesting within the confine of their voting unit just as they accused opposition party of being the brain behind the action of the thugs preventing them from voting.

Speaking with journalist, one of the women who refused to disclosed her name said some suspended hoodlums stormed their polling unit armed with dangerous weapons asking to vote for a particularly candidate contrary to their wish.

Her words, “Some political thugs working for opposition party brought some hoodlums to attack us, denying us from voting against their choice of candidate into the State House of Assembly.

” Can you force somebody to vote for your candidate when he or she had already made up his mind on whom to vote for, what kind of county are we. Because we refused to vote for the Candidate they want us to vote for they snatched and made away with ballot boxes and went away, “she lamented

However, our correspondent observed that there were no single security agencies on ground to confirmed the report

The protesting women pleaded with the journalists to help publicise their ordeal in the hands of thugs having their free day.

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