The police in Issele-Uku, Aniocha North Local Government Area, Delta State, yesterday, apprehended a bus loaded with ballot boxes.
The ballot boxes numbering over 30, Vanguard gathered, were dropped off by a luxury bus heading to the East from the North at Onicha-Ugbo Junction.
According to a dependable source, the luxury bus had zoomed off before the people in the area could draw attention of the police to the incident, adding that a smaller bus with number plate Edo USL 832 XL, that came to pick the boxes at the junction was arrested with the driver by the police.
The source, who did not want his name in the print, said the boxes had the picture of one of the major political parties’ presidential candidate and his running mate on them.
Effort made to reach the Divisional Police Officer for comments on the issue proved abortive at press time.
However, a senior police officer attached to the division confirmed the arrest, and added that investigation was on to ascertain the source of the boxes.
Noting that the boxes were similar to the ones used in the days of Federal Electoral Commission, FEDECO, he said the driver confessed that they were being used to raise funds for the said presidential candidate at the grassroots.
The police source said the ballot boxes were sent through a waybill from the Kano central office of the party.
The driver and the bus loaded with the ballot boxes were still being detained at the police station at press time.
Contacted, the state secretary of the party (names withheld) said he was not aware of the incident.
Another source in the party, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said: “I am not aware of anything like that. If at all it is true, it must be the handwork of Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, because there is nothing they cannot do. PDP can stage-manage anything.”
Also contacted, the state PDP Publicity Secretary, Mr. Deinghan Ray-Macaulay, said: “PDP could not involve itself in anything like that when we are sure of victory at the elections, particularly in Delta State.
“We are getting upper hand so we cannot do a thing like that. It is only those who are not sure of victory that can do such a thing and forment trouble.
“I strongly appeal to the police to carry out a thorough investigation into the matter.”