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#AkwaIbomDecides2019: NGO calls for Stiffer Sanctions for Sponsors of Election Violence.

…Visits victims of election violence in Hospitals

Pan African Women Trust – a non profit Organization headquartered in South Africa – have frowned at the violence that were fomented by some politicians at some polling units in Akwa Ibom State during the just concluded gubernatorial elections.

The group which undertakes among other things: promotion of young women’s welfare and girl child empowerment, disclosed their position on the matter when they paid a visit to the victims of the violence at the University of Uyo teaching hospital, Uyo, in what they described as post election observation – an Oversight function of international observers.

The Organization’s head of mission, Dr. Eben Udensi, said they were in the hospital to ensure that the victims’ welfare is not neglected and
also called on appropriate security agencies to investigate those cases of violence and visit stiffer sanctions on those found culpable.

She said that the organization has all the materials that will help them substantiate their allegations in the court of law Including eye witnesses who were at the scenes of these incidents.

“Having successfully observed elections in countries like South Africa and Malawi in 2014, Cameroon and Zambia 2017, Mali and Sierra Leone in 2018, and Previously in Bayelsa and Kogi States, Nigeria, INEC once again chose us alongside twenty-eight others to observe the 2019 general elections with due accreditation.

We swung into action by conducting a sensitization workshop for the electorates and incorporated uniform organizations and security agencies, other NGOs and clergies to campaign against election violence.

We recruited one thousand nine hundred and forty six persons who are graduates but unemployed. We trained them and gave them kits.
We sent them to the field and that is how we were able to monitor situations at the various polling units and we got to know that one Barrister Raymond was shot by one Honourable Kufre Etuk.

Another case is that of Godwin Sunday who has 25 pallets of bullet in body, told us that he was brought here by his uncle who doesn’t have money to offset his bills. As we speak, ten of those pallets have been removed and fifteen are left, and the Doctor in charge of the case is saying that he needs a specialist attention.

And so, we sought the attention of the Government, in the State and the Governor donated million naira for him through the Secretary to the State Government”.

On his part, the Secretary to the State Government, Dr Emmanuel Ekuwem said that the situation saddens the governor who has pledged to look into the welfare of the victims while activating judicial processes to prosecute the case.

“It is rather illogical for a sane mind to butcher a young girl who is under the age of ten in the name of being a political thug. We will do everything humanly possible to clamp down the perpetrators of these evil and bring them to book as soon as possible. Governor Emmanuel has instructed me to assess the situation and give him a feedback immediately and that is exactly what I am here to do”.

Ekuwem who made cash donations to the victims pleaded with the medics to give them all the medication needed as the bills will be taken care of while commending the Pan African group on a job well done.

Also speaking, the Commissioner for Environment and solid minerals, Honourable Iniobong Essien who is a medical doctor, said that the X-rays carried out on the patients show the the situation if not expertly handed might degenerate into a lethal case, hence the need for all hands to be on deck to ensure their survival.

Present at the visit were members of the organization and the press community.

©Edikan Inim

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