From Gyang Bere, Jose

The People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Plateau State, alleged that the state government and the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Chief of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Mahmoud Umar, collect permanent voter cards (PVC) from citizens in exchange for employment.

Party Publicity Secretary John Akans in a press release to Jos on Friday called the allegation criminal and fraudulent and urged the public to avoid anyone demanding their PVC for employment or any inducement financial.

The party said INEC ICT chief Mahmoud Umar, who served under Dr Nentawe Yilwatda, the APC gubernatorial candidate, in Plateau State when he was electoral commissioner resident of INEC in Benue State, was transferred to Plateau to do the ax work.

“The attention of the People’s Democratic Party has been drawn to a serious fraudulent and criminal act planned by the Plateau State Government through Mahmoud Umar, the Plateau State ICT Chief Electoral Commission National Independent National (INEC) who previously headed the same office in Benue State and worked directly under APC gubernatorial candidate Nentawe Yilwatda.

“We reliably understood that Nentawe single-handedly facilitated his redeployment to Jos to fulfill his unpopular aspiration.

“This fraudulent and deceptive act is being coordinated by the Office of the Secretary of the Plateau State Government in demanding Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) from innocent, ignorant and desperate job seekers (voters) in exchange for a job or a chicken change as the case may be.

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“It is important to let the general public, especially those looking for work and public servants who have been victims of this infamous act, know that there is no correlation between a candidate and even a worker and their PVC, as this only confirms that the APC government is bent on rigging the next election since it is their only option and a well-known goodwill, having lost their legitimacy and relevance due to their dismal performance.

“We raise this alarm over this nefarious act perpetrated by ICT Officer Mahmoud Umar INEC (who is believed to be neutral) in conjunction with the Plateau State Government to jeopardize the 2023 General Elections.”

The statement called on the police and relevant security agencies to stop the situation by calling Mahmoud Umar to order to prevent the breakdown of law and order.

In a quick reaction, INEC Plateau spokesman Micheal Otokpa said there was nothing as such at the Commission.

He said that INEC has a systematic way of distributing its PVCs according to local government areas through election officers and noted that no one collects PVCs in absentia.

“PVC collections are done at local government level by election officials and have all records of all collections, we do not give PVCs by proxy. But I don’t know what you’re talking about. He stated.

Similar, Information and Communications Commissioner, Plateau State, Hon. Dan Manjang described the allegations as outright lies and said no one demanded PVCs from anyone in exchange for a job or any inducement.

He explained that the government had posted job vacancies at Plateau State Hospital Management Board and Plateau Jos Specialty Hospital and those interested had purchased their forms online and said no one was not collecting PVC for use,” he said.