A group, Ogun Integrity Vanguard, has tasked the leadership of security agencies in the country, particularly the Nigeria Police, to ensure comprehensive probe of the electoral infractions allegedly perpetrated by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its governorship candidate in Ogun State, Oladipupo Adebutu, during the March 18 governorship and state assembly elections in the state.
The group made this call in a statement signed by its secretary, Duro Thomas, and made available to newsmen in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital.
Making reference to the incidents that happened during the polls, the group noted that PDP agents were arrested in the Agbado area of the state by Agbado Police officers with cash, more than 300 PVCs and Verve prepaid ATM cards with the name Caroline Oladunni Adebutu Memorial Endowment Scheme written boldly on them, pointing out that the action was a clear contravention of the Electoral Act.
It said: “It was not only the police that arrested agents of the PDP and other parties carrying out such devious acts.
“As amply documented by the spokesman of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), Femi Babafemi, operatives of the agency on election duty stop and search intercepted four party agents with hundreds of money credit cards meant to buy votes at Ibara Housing Estate, Abeokuta.
“Each card contained N10,000 and was meant to be activated with a code.
“The suspects, who were PDP agents, were subsequently handed over to the police. It is clear that Adebutu’s bloated image is underpinned by corrupt tendencies.
“ If we want this election to be a litmus test ffor future elections where Nigerians say no to manipulation and corruption of the electoral space, there is a need for the police to not only investigate but to also invite the PDP governorship candidate to explain why he carried out such infractions.”
The group added that a situation where some people believed that they could have their way through manipulation and corruption of the electoral process must stop.
“If INEC is sincere, this is the time to prosecute and make some people scapegoats,” it said.
However, the Director of Ladi Adebutu Campaign Organisation, Mr. Afolabi Orekoya, dismissed the allegations as “unfounded” and urged the group to come up with “substantial evidence” if it had any.
Orekoya said that Caroline Oladunni Adebutu Memorial Endowment Scheme, anl Non – profit making organisation, has been in existence before the 2023 general elections, wondering how anybody could in clear conscience tie it to election matters in Ogun State.