Votes are openly being sold between N5, 000 and N10, 000 in the ongoing governorship election in Bayelsa State.
THE WHISTLER reporter covering the election in Yenagoa saw voters in clusters, collecting the sums and writing their names and contacts, after which they cast their votes.
“I collected N10, 000 this morning,” a voter at Ekii ward II said. “PDP is buying and APC is also buying. This afternoon, I heard that the amount has reduced to N5,000. I collected from PDP. I didn’t collect from APC because I have conscience.”
A woman in her middle age at Eki ward III, Kpansia, said, “They said I should write my name but I refused. I can’t write my name, but I voted for the candidate of my choice. The money is our money, so there is no matter of conscience in it.”
Solomon Ogbei told our correspondent at Ekeki junction that, “The money they are sharing is for us to drink soft drink. It is in order. To vote is a sacrifice, so they are simply thanking us.”
A young man however rejected to sell his vote. He said, “I can’t sell my vote. I don’t want to spoil my mind. I hate to hear anything about buying vote. That is the problem killing our country. After buying the votes, the winners will steal our wealth to cover up. Nigeria will not get better if we don’t change.”
When our correspondent drew the attention of a security operative to the dealings, the officer, whose uniform bears no name, said, “Are you making an official report or what? You can make your reports at the appropriate quarters. Our own is to check violence, and the election has been violence-free.”
It was gathered that party agents monitored votes to ensure that those who are paid voted for the party that they received the money from.
Bayelsa Decides: Security Agents Fail To Act As PDP, APC Buy Votes At N10,000 is first published on The Whistler Newspaper