Assembly Poll: Police nab 15 suspects for electoral violence in Ondo

No less than 15 political thugs involved in cases of electoral violence in last Saturday’s House of Assembly election in Ondo have been arrested.

Police Commissioner in Ondo, Oyeyemi Oyediran, who stated this in Akure, said the suspects were nabbed in connection with the destruction of electoral materials, ballot-box snatching, and unlawful possession of firearms, among other crimes.

“They were arrested in connection with cases of Unlawful Possession of Firearm, Snatching of ballot boxes, attempted murder and serious assault,” Mr Oyeyemi said in a Telegraphic PressPoL issued by the Command’s Spokesperson, Funmilayo Odunlami-Omisanya on Wednesday.

Recall that violence broke out in some parts of Ondo during last weekend’s House of Assembly exercise held amid low turnout of voters.

During the poll, suspected political thugs hijacked and destroyed ballot boxes with other voting materials, most especially in the Ute community of Ose Local Government Area of Ondo.

Also, a policeman drafted to maintain peace during the poll in Idanre LGA of Ondo was hit by a stray bullet when violence broke out between two groups of political thugs in the sleepy town.

The officer was injured on his right leg alongside a middle age man and was immediately rushed to the hospital for treatment. 

Mr Oyeyemi, in the statement, revealed that the suspects who are currently in custody were apprehended in different parts of Ondo in conjunction with the military.

Although he did not disclose the names of the suspects, the police boss affirmed that they would be dealt with in line with the electoral act, particularly after investigation.

“All cases relating to electoral offenses will be harmonized and would be dealt with in accordance with the Electoral Act after completion of investigation.

“The command appreciates the collaboration of sister agencies and that of the law-abiding citizens in the state for the maintenance of law and order throughout the election period,” he further added.

The candidates of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), won the majority seats of the House of Assembly election exercise held at the weekend.

The APC cleared 22 out of 26 seats while the candidates of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) got the remaining four seats.