The Police in Taraba State and the Taraba State office of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC. have both commenced investigations into alleged forgery of INEC Form EC 40G, which is an election material meant to be used for reporting of "Cancellations / or Elections Not Held". The alleged forgery is in respect of Elections to The National Assembly 2015 at the Taraba State Central Senatorial District, where INEC had declared Abba Bashir Marafa of The PDP as winner against Yusuf Abubakar Yusuf of the APC and Senator Abubakar Tutare of The SDP in the last General Elections. It would be recalled that Yusuf A. Yusuf is challenging INEC's declaration of Mr. Abba Bashir at the Elections
Tribunal sitting in Jalingo.
Page Taraba has exclusively obtained the letter of complaint that has led both INEC and the Police to swing into action. In the letter of complaint to INEC, one A.U. Zakari has complained of how some personnel of INEC deceived and coerced him into signing "Form EC 40G" in order to indicate cancellation of Senatorial Elections held at Kaigama Ward of Bali Local Government of Taraba State. Mr. Zakari had served as the Ward Collation Officer at Kaigama Ward in the last Presidential and National Assembly Elections.
Also, at the Elections Tribunal, Y. A. Yusuf is challenging the "non-inclusion" of results of Kaigama Ward as well as the "switching of votes count" at Takalafiya Ward of Bali Local Government. In the letter of complaint, Mr. Zakari has written how "my Electoral Officer", one Adamu Sawaba and another Kaka Ahmadu "and others" swooped on him on 28th March 2015 and forced him to sign the document while in the actual Elections there was no such incidence of cancellation or "Elections not held" at the Kaigama Ward Level. The letter of complaint has been copied to the Police Commissioner (Taraba State) , the Assistant Commissioner SCIID and then the O/C SICB, all of the Taraba State respective offices.
Two staff of INEC who does not want their names in print have confirmed to Page Taraba the receipt of the letter of complaint from Mr. Zakari.Also, a competent and reliable source at the Taraba State Police Command confirmed receiving Mr. Zakari's complaint, but declined to comment on the steps being taken in the investigations. "We are competent, both professionally and constitutionally, to solve this riddle. This is the era of decorum and respect for law and order. We will get to the root of the matter in good time. This is all I can tell you", the Police source told Page Taraba.When contacted, the Taraba State office of the All
Progressives Congress, APC confirmed the unfolding event, but refused to comment on the available details. "They can run, but they cannot hide. We are determined to nail down corruption in this country. The era of impunity is over. This is a crime against Democracy, a crime against Nigerians, a crime against our nationhood and a crime against humanity. Jail is the appropriate home for criminals, and we will work hard until those gates of jail open to contain and teach criminals lessons about social order", the APC source said.
But, both PDP and the political camp of its candidate in the unfolding scenario are keeping sealed lips about the issue. "We are in court, and we will not comment on issues already in court", a PDP source retorted when contacted by Page Taraba. But when Page Taraba insisted that it is an Election Petition that is before the court (Tribunal), and not the case of forgery, the PDP source retorted once again, "You are the one
who knows about forgery and the rest!" When Page Taraba presented the copy of Mr. Zakari's
complaint to a member of Mr. Abba Bashir's political team, he was surprised: "Where did you
get this? Oh my God!" The source however recomposed himself and then said: "Some people in our camp are certainly misplacing things. I have advised the distinguished Senator to clean the camp of all rubbish. He is slow in doing this. We have to live with controversies everywhere. I will keep quiet until we meet again."
However, it is celebration galore at the Y. A. Yusuf camp. "We will reclaim our mandate, we will lock up criminals and we will use our APC broom to sweep away all dirt around us. Sweet journey has just begun. We have a very excellent case at the Tribunal. This is why our opponents have resorted to cheating and changing rules in the middle of the game.", a close associate of Y. A. Yusuf and member of his campaign
organisation told Page Taraba.