- A suspect identified as Shehu Maidama was arrested by the Sokoto state police command with specimen ballot papers
- The command said the suspect is a member of the PDP in the state
- The police, however, said the possession of dummy ballot papers is not a criminal offense
The Sokoto state police command on Monday, February 18, said it arrested a suspect with two bags filled with specimen ballot papers.
The command made this known at a press conference through Mohammed Abubakar Sadiq, the police public relations officer in the state, Leadership reports.
The police spokesman said the suspect was apprehended very late in the night during the force’s routine stop-and-search exercise.
Sadiq also debunked the claim that the police in the state arrested a vehicle filled with ballot papers. He said, however, they arrested someone who was believed to be a member of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the state with specimen papers.
He gave the suspect’s name as Shehu Maidama, and added the command believed the dummy ballot papers were produced by the PDP to sensitise their members on voting.
In his words: “There was an allegation that a vehicle filled with ballot papers was arrested yesterday, we therefore wish to clarify that, our men on stop and search patrol actually caught a vehicle in which they saw two bags of specimen ballot papers belonging to the PDP.
“The truth however is that what we saw were specimen ballot papers which every political party has the right to print and use same in enlightening their supporters on how to vote."
He said the it was very important to address newsmen after the event to set the record straight and deal with the rumour that has been making the rounds, as he added that the possession of specimen papers is not a criminal act.
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Muhammed Musa, the state’s head of voters education and public relations officer of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), also supported the position of the police command.
Meanwhile, Legit.ng earlier reported that 10 persons alleged to be involved in the murder of one person and burning of 11 buses close to the office of INEC in Obot Akara local government area of Akwa Ibom have been arrested by the state's police command.
It was also reported that, in two different operations, 179 Permanent Voters Card (PVC's) and 27 temporary voters cards were seized.
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