Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State has denied allegations that he registered for the second time in the ongoing Continuous Voter Registration [CVR) exercise being conducted by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) across the country.
Speaking on the matter, Bello said he was not in the country on May 19, adding that he travelled out to Dubai on a short break.
The governor further said he was shocked when he saw the press release accusing him of double registration for voters card, while he was still abroad, saying it could be his ghost that did the double registration.
Specifically, INEC recently alleged that Governor Bello had registered twice as a voter.
The umpire said the governor first registered in Abuja in January, 2011 and subsequently on May 19 in Lokoja.
It is understood that Bello, after registering in Abuja, was pictured in his office in the state registering as a voter the second time.
The commission vowed to deal decisively with any of its staff that may have collaborated in the illegal double registration.
However, the governor who was in the State House, Abuja to observe Friday’s Ju’maat prayer yesterday, advised the electoral umpire not to allow elements within its fold to drag the name of commission in the mud.
“I travelled on May 19 to Dubai for a brief break and I saw the press release and I was taken aback that I did double registration on the 23rd. Probably it is my ghost that has done the double registration.
“I think INEC has earned itself a very high reputation and I think and I am very confident that the leadership of INEC will not allow some elements in INEC to drag the name of the Commission into the mud.
“Surely that’s a falsehood. I did not do double registration of permanent voters card.”
It would be recalled, Senator Dino Melaye had asked Bello to step down over alleged electoral fraud.
Reacting to Melaye’s call, the governor said:
“Honestly speaking, when a human being is talking, then I will respond. Surely I don’t see anything coming out of that and I don’t think I have to waste my time in responding to whatever side distractions. Honestly speaking, I’m too focused to be distracted.
“Kogi State has suffered for over 25 years before I came on board and the good people of Kogi state are really appreciative of the efforts we are putting forward to make sure that the state is well developed, so any side distraction is not something I should pay attention to because the people are with me.”