IG Usman probes how Dapo Abiodun loaded N5 billion on bank-linked vouchers to buy votes in Ogun governorship election
The Inspector General of Police, Usman Baba, has directed police commissioner Olanrewaju Oladimeji in Ogun to investigate Governor Dapo Abiodun over allegations that he loaded N5 billion on bank-linked vouchers to buy votes in the March 18 gubernatorial poll.
The directive followed a petition to the police chief by Ladi Adebutu, the Peoples Democratic Party’s governorship candidate in Ogun, alleging that Mr Abiodun and the APC bought votes and perpetrated electoral violence and intimidation of voters.
Mr Adebutu, who spoke through his lawyer Ehi Uwaifoh, also accused Mr Abiodun of using N5 billion to induce voters with pre-loaded top-up gift cards loaded with N10,000 and N5,000 each.
He said the N5 billion used by Mr Abiodun in printing the cards and their cost violated the financing threshold of N1 billion mandated by section 88 of the Electoral Act, 2022.
In a letter dated May 8, signed by Idris Abubakar, the principal staff officer to the IGP, Mr Baba ordered the Ogun police command to investigate the Ogun governor’s alleged multibillion-naira vote-buying.
“Attached herewith is a copy of (a) letter dated 2nd May 2023 received from Ehi Uwaifoh & Co, on the above-underlined subject. The inspector-general of police directs that you deal with the complaint and report findings,” stated the letter. “Accept the assurances of the inspector g. General of police’s warm regards.”
Mr Abiodun did not respond to calls and messages placed to his known phone number on Sunday.
The governor has yet to appoint a spokesperson since taking office for a second term.
In the petition, Mr Adebutu, who is contesting the victory of the incumbent governor at the governorship election petitions tribunal, listed 16 people suspected to have worked with Mr Abuodun and the APC chairman in Ogun to send heavily armed thugs to attack some PDP supporters and voters.
Peoples Gazette reported how thugs suspected to be loyal to the APC invaded and disrupted the tribunal hearing challenging Mr Abiodun’s victory.
Mr Adebutu had accused the IGP of refusing to investigate his petition on suspected vote-buying and other electoral violence against the Ogun governor, while the command charged him at the Ogun State High Court for allegedly purchasing votes in the election.
In the lawsuit in which Mr Adebutu is charged alongside nine other people, the police claimed the governor was at large.