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FIRST INTERIM STATEMENT ON THE JULY 16, 2022 OSUN STATE
GOVERNORSHIP ELECTION BY THE CDD ELECTION ANALYSIS CENTRE
(CDD-EAC)

By Election, Press Release, PublicationNo Comments

With voting in the 16 July 2022 Osun State Governorship election already underway across the 30
Local Government Areas of the state, the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) through its
Election Analysis Centre (EAC) has been closely observing the election. CDD-EAC deployed 300
trained and accredited observers who are currently collecting data on key aspects of the day’s voting
and voting related process. The objective of the CDD-EAC doing this is to determine through
evidence based analysis, the credibility of the election in meeting and satisfying canons of electoral
integrity under Nigerian laws and international codes and standards.


The observations that follow are based on preliminary findings of the conducts and procedures on the
election day.


General Environment of the Election
The CDD-EAC notes the signing of the peace accord by thirteen out of the fifteen political parties
taking part in the election and other measures aimed at ensuring the election is hitch free. The decision
by the political actors to commit to an agreement, which enjoins them to do their part in ensuring a
violence-free election is laudable. Although pockets of disagreements between party agents and INEC
officials were reported by our observers in a few polling units, these were largely resolved. CDD-EAC
similarly notes that in the build up to today’s governorship election, a number of consultations and
strategy sessions involving the Election Management Body and the relevant security agencies were
held under the Inter-Agency Consultative Committee on Election Security (ICCES). These
consultations were observed to have happened at both national and state level; added to this is the
deployment of 21,000 police officers to the state. We hope these measures contribute to the peaceful
conduct of the election.


INEC Preparedness and Deployment
Data from the CDD-EAC observers indicate that 97 percent of INEC officials had arrived at their
polling units by 8:30am. It further shows that 79 percent of INEC poll officials addressed voters
before the 8:30am official time of poll opening. CDD-EAC data indicates that in at least 92 percent of
polling units observed critical election materials like ballot papers, Biometric Voter Accreditation
System (BVAS) devices, results sheets, ballot boxes and the voter register were available for the
conduct of the election – a marked improvement over the 83 percent recorded in Ekiti.
CDD-EAC notes that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) took some steps to
address some of the gaps identified in the Ekiti State governorship election last month. INEC has
embedded officials of the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) in the INEC
situation room in Osogbo to help address issues around deployment of personnel and movement of
voting materials. The Commission similarly conducted mock accreditation exercises in Osogbo,
Borife, Ede, and Egbedore to test the preparedness of the trained staff and the efficiency of the BVAS.

Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS)
The mock accreditation exercise carried out by INEC to ensure the readiness of the 5,306 BVAS
machines appears to have worked, with CDD-EAC officials noting that there was a BVAS machine
and compliance in 99% of the polling units visited, with two polling units in Ife Central and Irepodun
reporting the absence of BVAS machines at 9:30am.


Electoral Offences
CDD-EAC observers reported cases of political party agents campaigning, and canvassing for votes
near the polling unit in 14 LGAs, which represents 9.6 percent of the polling units observed. These
acts which contravene the provisions of the Electoral Act 2022 were mostly reported by observers in
Ife Central, Odo Otin, Osogbo, Oriade and Irepodun. CDD-EAC observers also reported seeing
unremoved campaign posters at some polling units, just as political party agents openly canvassed for
votes.


Fake News
CDD-EAC Fake News Hub for the July 16, Osun State Governorship election has been closely
watching online and offline spaces with the objective of tracking and fact-checking fake news and
misinformation. A number of fake news stories, misleading captions for images, and the sharing of
dead online links are being used by partisan actors to mislead voters or to possibly depress the vote in
areas in which the political opposition is perceived to have some strengths. CDD-EAC fact-checkers
have also documented claims and counter-claims by political actors over allegations of vote buying.
Using online tools, and a range of verification techniques, CDD-EAC fact-checkers have been
working to independently fact-check online and offline misinformation capable of undermining voter
confidence. One of the major fake news stories, which began trending as voters headed to the polls
this morning, is the claim that the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate, Ademola Adeleke had
been sacked by a court. CDD-EAC fact checkers verified and found this claim to be false. CDD-EAC
fact-checkers also spotted a claim that one of the major opposition parties’ candidates was asking
voters to swear an oath that voters voted for him before he would pay them. CDD-EAC fact-checkers
found nothing on the circulated image to lend credence to the claim. Our fact-checkers also noted that
the image, which was circulated to make the claim, was taken at the point the candidate was casting
his vote.


Conclusion
CDD-EAC observers will continue to keep a close watch on the election up till when voting ends, and
counting and collation of results begin. Further updates on findings will be provided at the end of
voting.


Signed:
Professor Adele Jinadu, Chair, CDD-EAC
For Media Enquiries, contact:
Mr. Damien Ihekoronye
Coordinator, Election Analysis Centre (CDD-EAC)
(+2348087185684 | idamian@cddwestafrica.org )

Overview of Key Issues in the Pre-Election Period for the July 16, 2022 Osun State
Governorship Election

By Election, NewsNo Comments


Introduction
The second of two off-cycle governorship elections for 2022 will be conducted by the
Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Osun State, on July 16, 2022. The
election is the seventh in the state since the return of the current democratic dispensation in 1999 following a Court of Appeal verdict, on 26 November 2010, Osun’s elections moved
from the general election cycle to an off-cycle polls. Rauf Aregbesola served two terms (2010 – 2018), and was succeeded by Gboyega Oyetola, who now seeks a second term as governor.


The July 2022 Osun State gubernatorial elections will be the second to be conducted under
the amended Electoral Act, 2022. There are 1,955,657 registered voters for the coming
elections, which is a vast increase from the 1,246,915 voters that decided the 2018 elections
and records a 36% increase in voters registered. Voters in Osun State go to the polls for Saturday’s governorship elections to either re-elect an incumbent governor, who is a member of the All Progressives Congress (APC) or change control of the state to any of the fifteen opposition parties, led by the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) who produced a former governor of the state (2003 – 2010). However, a major
difference in this election is the strength of third party candidates and the possible impact it
might have on the electoral results. In 2018, the Social Democratic Party, represented by
Iyiola Omisore, was a prominent candidate and won several Local Governments in the
populous Ife area. Omisore has since moved to the APC and, as a result, the CDD EAC
observes that of the other party candidates, none is able to command a significant level of
support to avoid an APC or PDP win. The CDD-EAC notes that there are 15 political parties
fielding candidates for the election. None of the governorship candidates and six of the
deputy governorship candidates are women, just as the age range of the candidates indicates a
low participation of the youth.


Following on from a successful exercise during the June 2022 Ekiti State governorship
elections, the CDD-EAC will be closely observing the electoral process with the objective of
collecting data to support evidence-based analysis of key aspects of the Osun State
governorship election. Similarly, the CDD-EAC will also host a fake news hub for the
purpose of tracking and countering fake news and misinformation as it affects the election.
Pre-Election Observations Based on the observation of the CDD EAC in the pre-election period, the following are the key trends, which will play a major role in the successful conduct of the polls:


Review of INEC’s Preparedness
Voter turnout will affect the legitimacy and acceptance of the Osun 2022 elections. As at 10
July 2022, INEC reported that only 1,479,595 million of the 1,955,657 registered voters had
collected their permanent voters cards (PVC). This equates to 76% of voters registered and
the low number led to INEC extending the deadline for collecting PVCS to 14 July – two
days before the elections. INEC’s preparations for the election extends to the resources
deployed and areas outlined for the election. 5,305 BVAS machines have been deployed to
cover 3,763 polling units across the 30 Local Governments in the state. The CDD-EAC will
observe if the number is sufficient to ensure that voting is carried out efficiently and if any
technical difficulty is dealt with promptly. The CDD-EAC also notes that because of the
increased size, number of polling units, LGAs and registered voters, the Osun elections
provides a sterner test of INEC’s capacity, when compared to the June 2022 Ekiti
governorship elections.


Finally, the CDD-EAC notes the need for a re-run in the 2018 Governorship elections. This
incident led to some concerns about the result because of the PDP candidate’s defeat, after
leading the first day of the poll and the small margin between the two candidates. Ahead of
the 2023 elections, the CDD-EAC hopes that the conduct of the Osun governorship election
will raise no doubts of INEC’s ability to conduct free, fair and credible elections.
Use of Technology by INEC.


The CDD-EAC notes that the 16 July 2022 Osun State Governorship election is significant
because it will be the last preliminary election as the INEC prepares for the 2023 general
elections. The election also reaffirms precedence that has been set under the Electoral Act
2022 concerning guidelines and regulations for the conduct of elections. The CDD-EAC
commended the progress recorded during the Ekiti elections by INEC and election
stakeholders. Highlighted areas include the high rate of officials arriving at polling units on
time and the high usage of the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) – which resulted
in quick accreditation numbers and brief issues in relation to the review of issues raised. This
led to the prompt release of results via the INEC Result Viewing Portal (IReV). However,
Ekiti’s elections were still marred by incidents of vote buying, violence and a few instances
where voters were allowed to cast their votes without being authenticated by the BVAS. The
CDD-EAC remarks that consolidating on the progress made, and addressing the areas for
improvement, will be key for the credibility of the process.


Emphasis of zoning over issues
The CDD-EAC is concerned about the lack of an issue-based campaign by the major
candidates. In the build up to the 2022 elections, a major area of consideration is zoning –
since 1999, both Osun Central and Osun East senatorial zones have produced governors,
while Osun West has not done so. The PDP candidate, Adeleke, is from the Osun West zone
has based a campaign on representation via this zoning principle.


Incidents of Violence and Insecurity
The CDD-EAC also expresses worry about recent instances of violence, such as the report
that gun men recently attacked the home of the Labour Party’s candidate, Yusuf Sulaimon
Lasun. The home of the Accord Party candidate, Akin Ogunbiyi, was set on fire and the PDP
has reported that police officers arrested some of their members without cause in Osogbo, as
well as in Ije-Ijesha and Etioni in Ori Ade and Atakumosa Local Government Areas
in Osun state signed a Peace Accord on the 13th of July 2022, there is need for a proper
security analysis that will map out hotspots of violence. This is pertinent as the state is
notorious for cultism and street gangs that can easily be appropriated for violence especially
during the ongoing ASUU strike. With current security realities, the Osun election will
require a greater deployment of security personnel. It is hoped that the recent signing of the
peace accords by the governorship candidates will ensure that their supporters refrain from
violent activities regardless of the result of the polls.


Impact of National Politicians
The Osun election is not just the last dress rehearsal before the 2023 general election but also
hosts a number of national figures that can influence the conduct and outcome of the election.
The presidential candidate of the ruling APC, Bola Tinubu, is from the South-West
geopolitical zone, while the former interim national chair of the party, Bisi Akande, is a
former governor of the state. Likewise, the PDP has shown more interest in the Osun
election, when compared to the Ekiti governorship polls. Dr. Iyorchia Ayu, the national chair
and Atiku Abubakar, the presidential candidate alongside other PDP governors have attended
rallies in Osun. This has raised fears that there might be an increase in vote-buying and the
use of security forces to intimidate the opposition and voters.


Voter Inducement
Despite the 2022 Electoral Act, the spate of vote-buying has not reduced. This was evident in
the Ekiti governorship election and likely to be worse in the Osun gubernatorial election. In
2018, three men were arrested for vote-buying by police officers and the International Centre
for Investigative Reporting (ICIR) recorded instances of PDP agents partaking in such
activities. CDD-EAC observers during the June 2022 Ekiti Governorship Elections noted
several instances of vote buying and calls for stronger monitoring by INEC.


Fake News and Misinformation
An increasing aspect of concern is the prevalence of fake news, misinformation and
inflammatory rhetoric. These issues can lead to incidents of violence and reduced voter
turnout depending on the impact. An instance during the June 2022 Ekiti Governorship
Election was the report that a frontline candidate had withdrawn and endorsed another. While
CSOs and the CDD strived to circulate the fact that this was not the case, the impact on votes
cannot be ascertained. The CDD-EAC has deployed resources to track any instance of fake
news so that prompt verification can be carried out as necessary.


Lastly, the CDD-EAC hopes that all critical stakeholders in the election process, from INEC
to traditional leaders and relevant security agencies, work together to ensure a credible
election in Osun. CDD-EAC observers will be on ground to provide real-time information
and data that will inform subsequent reports respectively. Although 13 of the 15 political parties participating in the gubernatorial election

FACT CHECK: Was Osun State Governor, Adegboyega Oyetola Attacked?

By Election, Fact Check, Fake NewsNo Comments

CLAIM: Osun State Governor and candidate of All Progressives Congress (APC) Adegboyega Oyetola was attacked during his campaign in Osogbo, Osun state.

VERDICT: False

CONTEXT: On July 6, 2022, a video surfaced online, trending on several WhatsApp groups, particularly WhatsApp groups connected to Osun State. The trending video, which is still being circulated on July 13, 2022, claimed that the Osun State Governor and candidate of All Progressives Congress (APC) Adegboyega Oyetola was attacked during his campaign in Osogbo, the Osun state capital. In the video, several young people were seen, throwing stones and other objects at the convoy believed to be that of the Governor.

VERIFICATION: Investigations carried out by CDD fact-checkers using the InVid video tool yielded no results. The video was put on the deepware to see if the image has been altered in any way and the result came out inconclusive. However, an in-depth examination of the video led to a deep dive into the online space, and findings revealed that the amateur video first appeared online on October 17, 2020. This was during the #EndSARS protest nationwide, including in Osogbo Osun state. As reports had documented, the protest in Osogbo, like elsewhere, hoodlums had hijacked the process, leading to the attack on the convoy of the Governor, Adegboyega Oyetola. The video was used on several credible news platforms including Channels Television, TVC and other print media, prior to its resurfacing on July 6, 2022, ahead of the Osun state gubernatorial elections scheduled to hold on Saturday, July 16, 2022.

CONCLUSION: CDD fact-checkers can confirm that the Osun State Governor and candidate of All Progressives Congress (APC) Adegboyega Oyetola was not attacked during his campaign in Osogbo. The trending video is old and is being circulated as though, it has just happened.

CDD is urging members of the public, particularly residents and voters in Osun state to be conscious of political and electoral disinformation and misinformation. If you must share any news report, do read beyond the headlines, and independently verify the story before sharing.

WHY WE FACT CHECKED THIS: The Osun election of July 16 just like every election is filled with fake news in the information space, aimed at swaying voters. CDD fact-checked this claim to provide facts to civilians and debunk claims that could manipulate voters

Fact Check: Did Wike Say PDP Will Vote Southern Presidential Candidate In 2023?

By 2023 Elections, Election, Fact Check, Fake NewsNo Comments

CLAIM: Wike said that PDP will vote southern presidential candidate in 2023

Verdict: False

Context: A post on Facebook by the “APC Frontier Group” claiming that Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State said he will support a southern candidate in the 2023 presidential election is currently causing rancour across social media platforms. The post reads:

“Sule Lamido thinks I am a fool that he will say PDP should promise me presidency after the tenure of Atiku. Who go dash Atiku president self? …we are not second-class citizens in this country, you can’t like Rivers money but hate us, we will vote southern president next year.”

Verification: To investigate the claim, our partners at Daily Trust went through the Twitter handle of the governor and his other social media handles to find out whether he actually made such remarks but couldn’t see anything of such. They also conducted a web search of major newspaper sites, blogs and online platforms to see if there is any story as such attributed to Wike but couldn’t find anything.

Checks show that Governor Wike was aggrieved following the outcome of the PDP primaries which produced Mr. Atiku Abubakar as the flagbearer. However, the governor has not made any comment on leaving the party.

There were reports that he was leaving the party after playing host to presidential aspirants like Alhaji Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso of the New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP) as well as Mr. Peter Obi, candidate of the Labour Party.

However, he has made no hint to or any plans to leave the party.

Why We Checked This: Following the APC national convention to elect the party’s presidential flag bearer, Wike who was one of the candidates to lose to Atiku has taken a backseat in the party activities causing several rumors and speculations on his future political plans. To avoid ethnic disinformation like these from swaying the people’s vote, CDD has fact checked the claim to debunk the viral claim.

Fact Check: Is APC Buying PVC from Voters to Use on Election Day in Osun State Election?

By 2023 Elections, Election, Fact Check, Fake News, PoliticsNo Comments

VERDICT: FALSE AND MISLEADING

CLAIM: On July 7, 2022, fact-checkers at the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) spotted a claim trending in Osogbo and around the State of Osun that the All Progressives Congress (APC) is mopping up and buying Permanent Voters Cards (PVCs) from Voters to use on election day. The trending story also alleged that the party was working with Independent National Commission (INEC) to be able to use proxies to present PVCs which will count for votes for their party. 

FACT CHECKING PROCESS: CDD fact checkers reviewed the trending claim to ascertain its validity. Fact checkers could not independently verify that the APC in Osun state was buying and mopping up PVCs from voters of the state to use same on election day, scheduled for Saturday, July 16, 2022. However, Fact Checkers reviewed the INEC accreditation and voting process which has been widely publicized in its Election Guidelines and Regulations.

INEC introduced the Bi-Model Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) to detect fraud in the accreditation and voting process. BVAS is now used to ascertain if the PVCs presented at the polling unit, truly belong to the persons presenting the cards and that PVC must correspond with those in the register of voters in that polling unit. The allegations that the party was buying or mopping PVCs of voters, with the aim of using proxies to present the PVCs and vote will therefore be a difficult task. Since INEC introduced BVAS, the use of Incidence Form has been abolished. During the 2018 election in Osun state, Incidence Forms were used to authenticate and accredit voters, whose fingerprints failed.

To validate these findings, the accreditation process for the 2022 Osun elections has four (4) steps which were used during the Ekiti State governorship elections held on Saturday, July 18, 2022.

The steps include the following:

  1. BVAS will be used to capture fingerprints of the card bearer (i.e. the voter)
  2. There will be a request for the voter to place his/her finger on the fingerprint scanner of the BVAS for authentication.
  3. If the voter fails to be authenticated using his/her fingerprint, they will proceed to step four.
  4. Authentication of voters using the Photo option; will ensure that the intending voter will be captured automatically by the BVAS for facial authentication.

Where/When BVAS fails to authenticate the intending voter, that voter will be unable to vote in the election, because authentication failure is the same as non-accreditation.   

 

CONCLUSION: CDD fact-checkers can confirm that the claims that APC was buying or mopping up PVCs from Voters to use on election day is FALSE, as evidence has proven that a PVC can only be used by the owner. CDD is urging members of the public, particularly voters in the state of Osun to independently verify trending stories, especially on blogs and social media platforms, before sharing same.

SUMMARY OF DISCUSSIONS ON EMERGING ISSUES THAT WILL SHAPE THE 2023 GENERAL ELECTION IN NIGERIA

By 2023 Elections, Election, Fact Check, Politics, Press ReleaseNo Comments

The 2023 general election will be a defining moment not just for Nigeria but also for West Africa. The region has suffered democratic decline and experienced coups and counter-coups in the past three years. However, beyond the hopes of the emergence of transformational leadership that will change the country’s fate, there are existing challenges that threaten the conduct of free, fair, and credible elections in Nigeria.

Nigeria’s 2023 election will be the seventh to be conducted in the fourth republic. It will be unique for two reasons. First, it will not have an incumbent running. Second, the country has promulgated the 2022 Electoral Act, bringing new changes to election guidelines and regulations. However, the 2023 election is one that many analysts speculate will be fraught with severe challenges. Nigeria’s six geopolitical zones are currently embroiled in different conflicts, ranging from farmer-herder clashes witnessed in all the zones to banditry and terrorist threats in the northwest and north-central and secessionist agitations in the southeast. These conflict situations are likely to deteriorate further with increased political violence that could affect the safety of election materials, personnel and even voters. In addition, the security situation could affect voter turnout – despite ongoing voter registration already surpassing 85 million registered voters – and even the legitimacy of the results.

Beyond the security situation and the controversies arising from the interpretation of the 2022 Electoral Act by politicians and political parties, the lack of internal democracy in parties, monetization of the electoral process and the issue of zoning will all be critical issues that are likely to affect the outcome of the 2023 general elections.

It is on this basis that the Open Society Initiative for West Africa (OSIWA) and the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) organized a one-day colloquium to discuss “Emerging Issues that will Shape the 2023 General Elections in Nigeria”. The event was held on 25 May 2022 and was attended by a broad spectrum of stakeholders interested in ensuring the peaceful and credible conduct of elections in Nigeria. They included the current Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and his immediate predecessor, representatives from leading civil society groups, political parties, security agencies, academia, and the media.

The keynote address by Prof Mahmood Yakubu, the Chairman of INEC, kicked off the day of discussions and was followed by four enriching panel sessions that x-rayed diverse emerging challenges to the conduct of elections in Nigeria with solutions proffered. The first panel dealt with the perquisites for a successful general election in 2023. The second panel examined the emerging threats and challenges to a successful 2023 general election. The theme of the third panel was the pathways to electoral accountability in 2023, while the fourth panel was a summary of cardinal issues arising from the colloquium.

Read Full Report Below

FACT CHECK: Has Nyesom Wike Defected to the Labour Party?

By 2023 Elections, Election, Fact Check, NewsNo Comments

Claim: Rivers State Governor, and runner-up at the recently concluded PDP presidential primaries, Nyesom Wike has defected to the Labour party in support of its nominee, Peter Obi

Verdict: False

Context: SaharaNews, an online publication, reported that Wike had moved to support fellow southern presidential candidate Peter Obi. Interestingly, Obi had notably also left the PDP before the primaries.

Verification: Our partners at Daily Trust have uncovered that not only is the headline false, but the video attached was an old clip of Wike. The original video was also muted for some minutes and a background voice was heard endorsing Peter Obi and ridiculing other candidates and politicians. The voice also mentioned that Wike is angry.

Why We Checked This: Recently, during the June 2022 Ekiti State Governorship election, a viral post stated that the SDP candidate, Segun Oni, had stepped down to endorse the PDP candidate, Bisi Kolawole. We worked with other CSOs to debunk this news but, as it was on the eve of the elections, we cannot ascertain if this affected the decision of voters during the polls.

FACT CHECK: Has Peter Obi’s Movement Become Spiritual?

By Election, Fact Check, Fake News, NewsNo Comments

VERDICT: Misleading False Alarm

CLAIM: A Tweep, had tweeted via @Nkemchor_, “Mbaka attacked Peter Obi and lost his Adoration Ground Wike attacked Peter Obi and lost the Primaries Ike Ekweremadu attacked Peter Obi and got arrested for Organ Trafficking in the Uk. It seems this Peter Obi movement has become spiritual.”

FACT CHECKING PROCESS: Preliminary findings show that the tweet which was made in the afternoon of June 23, 2022 had garnered 3,991 retweeets, 244 Quote tweets and over 11,000 likes as at June 27, 2022.

Few days ago, the spiritual Director of the Adoration Ministry, Enugu, Nigeria, Rev. Fr. Ejike Mbaka had without mincing words, declared that the Labour Party presidential candidate, Mr. Peter Obi would never smell the seat of the President.

A stingy man, that cannot give people his money, with this hunger ravaging the land, and you are saying he is the one you want. Do you want to die of hunger? Are you people insane? Where is the Holy Spirit? Mbaka opined.

In May, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)’s Presidential Aspirant and Governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike, had said while appearing on a programme on Channels Television that the former Anambra State governor, lacks integrity and that he left the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) because he knew he would not win the presidential ticket.

So, when we talk of character and integrity, it is an issue. You can be the best economist, but you don’t have character, no integrity. Governor Wike stated.

On his part, former Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu said that the South-East region will not vote for Peter Obi in the 2023 presidential election. Shortly after the governor of Delta State, Patrick Okowa was announced as Atiku’s running mate, a video trended in which Ekweremadu said, I assure you that South-East will vote for the People Democratic Party (PDP). I can guarantee that. No doubt Peter Obi is our son, but you need to be dynamic. You need to ask yourself, can Peter win the presidential election? Can the East afford to throw away their votes? Can we afford to be sentimental in matters that concern our people, our children, and our future? No. Senator Ekweremadu quoted.

peter obi's movement become spiritual

CONCLUSION: Despite the evidence above, while it is true that Senator Ekweremadu was arrested in the UK, Rev. Fr. Ejike Mbaka, whose parish was suspended on the directives of Bishop Callistus Onaga, returned to the Adoration Ground to address the Adorers, Vanguard confirmed. And Governor Wike, who contested in the PDP’s primary election did not lose the contest because of the comments on Peter Obi. Many political pundits praised the gallant role of the Rivers Governor in that race. All claims by the individual cannot be substantiated as several factors came to play on all occasions bothering the three personalities mentioned.

Five Things to Know About Biodun Oyebanji, Ekiti Governor-Elect

By Blog, Election, Fact Check, Fact Checks, NewsNo Comments

The candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Mr Biodun Oyebanji, has been declared the winner of Saturday’s Ekiti governorship election.

Declaring the winner, Prof. Oyebode Adebowale, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) returning officer, said Oyebanji polled a total of 187,057 votes to win the election.

He said Oyebanji had certified the requirement of the law and was, therefore, declared the winner.

“That I, Prof. Oyebode Adebowale, hereby certified that I am the returning officer of the Ekiti 2022 Governorship Election held on June 18.

“That Biodun Oyebanji, the candidate of APC, having satisfied the requirements of the law, is hereby declared the winner and returned,” Adebowale declared.

Here are fiv things to know about the governor-elect.

Birth

Biodun Abayomi Oyebanji, fondly called BAO, is a politician and member of the All Progressives Congress, who was born on December 21, 1967 in Ikogosi-Ekiti, Ekiti State. He is 54.

Education

He earned a Bachelor of Science (BSc.) degree in Political Science from the Ondo State University (now Ekiti State University, Ado-Ekiti) in 1989 and continued his quest for honours at the University of Ibadan, Oyo State in 1992 where he bagged a Masters Degree (M.Sc) in Political Science (International Relations & Strategic Studies).

Former lecturer

Oyebanji started his professional career as a lecturer at the Department of Political Science, University of Ado Ekiti, where he worked for four years (1993 –1997) and later proceeded to work as the manager, Treasury, and Financial Services at the defunct Omega Bank Plc (now Heritage Bank) till May 1999.

Ex-Ekiti SSG

Until his decision to run as Governor of Ekiti, Oyebanji was the Secretary to the Ekiti State Government under incumbent Governor Kayode Fayemi.

Family

He is married to Mrs Oyebanji, a princess in Ado Ekiti and associate professor at the University of Ibadan.

FACT CHECK: Did the PDP Candidate, Senator Ademola Adeleke, Refuse to Sign the Peace Pact Toward a Peaceful Election in Osun State?

By Election, Fact Check, Fake NewsNo Comments

VERDICT: False

CLAIM: Following the meeting of Nigerian singer, Innocent Idibia, also known as 2Baba, with the major candidates, Dr Akin Ogunbiyi of the Accord Party (A), Governor Adegboyega Oyetola of the All Progressives Congress (APC), and Senator Ademola Adeleke of the Peoples Democratic Party, (PDP), in the scheduled July 16, 2022, Osun state governorship election, where he urged them to prevail on their supporters to eschew violence during the poll; by signing a peace pact, pledging commitment to a peaceful poll. News broke online and offline in the state, that Senator Ademola Adeleke, the PDP governorship candidate had refused to sign the peace pledge toward a peaceful election in the state.

VERIFICATION: Checks by CDD fact-checkers revealed that the Vote Not Fight Campaign team in Osun state confirmed that both the APC and PDP candidates signed the Peace pledge.

In a Joint Vote Not Fight and Stop-Violence against Women in Politics Press Statement debunking Fake News About the campaign advocacy visit to Osun PDP’s Candidate, the organizers confirmed that the governorship candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) for Osun 2022 off-cycle governorship election, Senator Ademola Nurudeen Adeleke on Wednesday 22nd, 2022 signed the Vote Not Fight (VNF) and Stop Violence against Women in Politics (Stop-VAWIP) placards to demonstrate his commitment to a peaceful governorship election. He also adopted the updated Osun Youth Agenda with a pledge to ensure its effective implementation if elected.

Fact checkers in Osun state also reached out to the campaign organization of the PDP’s candidate in Osogbo, spokesperson confirmed that their candidate, Senator Adeleke signed the peace pact with excitement.

CONCLUSION: CDD can confirm that the PDP candidate, Senator Adeleke signed the peace pact aimed to promote peaceful election. Therefore, the claim is false. CDD urges residents and voters to ensure they independently verify every story and other news items, especially as the state heads for election on July 16, 2022.

FACT CHECK: Enugu PDP Governorship Candidate Not Assasinated

By Blog, Election, Fact Check, NewsNo Comments

Verdict: False

Claim:

A video of about 2 minutes has been trending online with the posters claiming that the winner of the just concluded governorship primary in Enugu, Mr. Peter Ndubuisi Mbah, has been assassinated.

In the video, a man dressed in what looked like a police T-shirt and jean trousers lay lifeless on the road while another, dressed in traditional attire lay on the ground in a pool of blood, close to a Toyota Land Cruiser SUV which was riddled with bullets.

Verification Process:

Old video being circulated

An analysis of the video using InVid, a video verification tool, showed that the video first appeared on the July 7, 2021.

Further search on Google revealed that the video was shot at the scene where the Director General of the Scientific Equipment Development Institute (SEDI), Enugu, Professor Samuel Ndubuisi was assassinated.

As reported by mainstream media, Ndubuisi along with his police orderly were shot dead along the Centenary City Junction axis of the Enugu-Port Harcourt Expressway on July 7, 2021.

Mbah debunks video

Reacting to the viral video, Mbah’s media office in a statement signed by Dan Nwome, described the report as false labelling, wicked and evil.

The statement titled, ‘Fake news on the assassination of Dr. Peter Ndubuisi Mbah’ reads, “We have been inundated with calls over fake news in circulation on some social media platforms on the purported assassination of the Enugu State PDP governorship flagbearer, Peter Ndubuisi Mbah. The story is false, wicked and evil.

“Our investigations indicate that the story was doctored from the video of the unfortunate gruesome assassination of one Dr. Ndubuisi (real name: Professor Samuel Ndubuisi), the Director-General of the Science and Equipment Development Institute (SEDI), along the Enugu Port Harcourt expressway, two years ago.

“It is the mere coincidence of “Ndubuisi” in the two names that has been twisted by some devious and malevolent characters to spread unfounded panic and alarm amongst our genuinely concerned teeming supporters and well-wishers in Enugu State and beyond.

“We condemn this wicked, ill-conceived misinformation and urge the masterminds to play politics of moderation and sportsmanship, have the fear of God and develop respect for the sanctity of human life.”

Conclusion:

Relying on available evidence, Daily Trust can confirm that the video in circulation is an old one and is in no way connected with the Enugu governorship candidate as claimed.

FAKE NEWS IN WEST AFRICA – FLOWS, FACILITATORS AND FIXES

By Blog, Election, Fact Check, Fake News, Human Rights, News, PublicationNo Comments

The spread of falsehoods across information ecosystems in West Africa is growing. Although enabled by increasing access to social media and the internet across the region, the flow of fake news is not simply confined to online spaces but moves between offline and digital environments with regularity and ease. A rumour that is started by an online influencer on Facebook, once trending, can become a topic of debate and discussion for television or radio talk shows, broadening its audience. These debates, in turn, are then discussed and debated in gathering spots such as markets, atayah bases, okada stages or grins enabling them to disseminate through well-established word of mouth rumour networks. Completing the circle, these offline rumours can then be transposed back online and can either be further skewed to disinform or simply reinforce an already circulating falsehood.

The way information flows between online and offline networks is critical for understanding how fake news spreads and influences actions across West Africa. So
too is trust. Information that a recipient deems to be from a trustworthy source – be that the original source of the information or the individual who last shared it – remains fundamental to decisions about what is true and what is not, along with whether the information aligns with existing beliefs and biases. These factors are increasingly well understood by those involved in the
purposeful spreading of falsehoods online across West Africa particularly on issues relating to politics and health.

This report draws on the findings of 15 studies undertaken in 2021 covering all members of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS). Information was gathered through desk-based research, key informant interviews, focus group discussions and the authors’ experiences of using social media platforms. This regional report draws out some of the key trends from those studies. It highlights the individuals or organizations involved in the spread of falsehoods, the tactics they seek to employ, and the influence and impact that they are having. It then draws attention to the range of approaches adopted so far to respond to the ‘fake news’ threat. It concludes by offering recommendations to key stakeholders about what more can — and should — be done.

Read the full article below

FACT CHECK: Did Arthur Eze Promise to Mount 200,000 Cameras In All Polling Units?

By 2023 Elections, Blog, Election, Fact Check, Fake News, PublicationsNo Comments

Verdict: FALSE

CLAIM:

A screenshot making the rounds claims that the founder and Chairman of Atlas Oranto Petroleum, Prince Arthur Eze, has volunteered to mount 200,000 cameras in all the polling units in Nigeria.

It reads: “Presently one of the richest Africans and Prince Arthur Eze has volunteered to mount 200,000 cameras all over polling units in Nigeria and has said that he won’t be alive for Peter Obi to be rigged out. He also said yesternight that he is donating first installment of $500 million to Obi campaign organization, wahala be like bicycle, we go shake Nigeria. Thanks Ozoigbondu.”

Verification Process

Currently there are 176,846 polling units across Nigeria as mapped out and demarcated by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC). This number is in contrast with the planned 200,000 cameras for all polling units stated in the claim.

Probing further, available information shows that one may pay about $600 to install four or more wireless cameras, a recording system, and Cloud and Smart capabilities. Analyzing this number and cost, it is established that the cost of setting up 200,000 cameras is equivalent to $3 million.

According to multiple sources, Arthur Eze’s net worth is estimated to be around $5.8 billion. Although the amount for installation of the cameras including the claim on donating $500 million for Obi’s presidential campaign would not be difficult for Prince Eze to provide, it should be noted that he did not make the claim as circulated by social media users and blogs.

Conclusion

CDD/Daily Trust can confirm that there is no evidence that Prince Arthur Eze made the claim. The information should be disregarded by members of the general public.

FACT CHECK: INEC Doesn’t Operate Voter Registration Centers in Niger Republic

By Blog, Election, Fact Check, News, VoteNo Comments

Verdict: False

CLAIM:

A Facebook user, @Emmanuel Onwubiko, made a post alleging that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) operates voter registration points in Niger Republic.

Full Text: “Rather than talk anyhow, can we investigate the claim that INEC is currently operating voter registration points in Niger Republic. Is this rocket science?”

Under the comment section, another Facebook user, Fami Ajala also commented by saying “It is alleged that there are about 21 INEC offices operating in Niger Republic.”

Similarly a Twitter user, Nche Nwanbunike had also posted that INEC was having 21 voter registration units in the neighbouring Niger Republic and also blaming the nation’s media for being silent on the matter.

Verification Process

In verifying the claim, CDD/Daily Trust went through the websites INEC to find out if registration centers were extended to Niger Republic, but found out that all the registration points are domiciled in the 36 states of the country including the federal capital territory.

CDD/Daily Trust further reached out to the electoral body to verify the claim. Subsequently, INEC described the social media post that the commission has ‘21 INEC registration centres in Niger Republic as false and unsubstantiated.

Mr. Rotimi Lawrence Oyekanmi, the Chief Press Secretary to the INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, simply told Us that “such post and similar falsehoods should be ignored.”

Oyekanmi, said, “The post was an unsubstantiated allegation made by a Twitter user, Nche Nwanbunike. The person who made such post should be asked to prove it.”

There has been calls for INEC to extend the June 30 deadline for the continuous voter registration (CVR) amidst a court ruling asking INEC not to close the CVR registration.

CDD/Daily Trust reports that ahead of the 2023 general elections, there is a growing interest among Nigerians to obtain Permanent Voter Cards.

Conclusion

After thorough investigation, we can confirm that there are no polling units in Niger Republic and the claims should be ignored.

FACT CHECK: Did Late Osinachi Family open a GoFundMe account?

By Blog, Election, Fact Check, Fact Checks, News, PublicationNo Comments

Verdict: False

Claim:

A viral message is currently trending on social media purporting to be a crowdfunding platform popularly known as GoFundMe to assist the family of late Gospel singer Osinachi Nwachukwu.

The GoFundMe account is said to have realized about N32 million as at the time of the fact check.

The aim of the crowdfunding was said to be for the purpose of raising money for the welfare of late Osinachi’s children.

Verification:

Daily Trust tried to verify the authenticity of the account and also to know if it was authorised by the family.

Subsequently, a statement made available to Daily Trust on behalf of the family by A. A. Paul, a lawyer, stated that the family did not authorise the crowd funding.

The family also called on Nigerians to discontinue donating to the account as it was not approved by the family.

Part of the statement reads: “We plead with the general public to please respect our privacy. We appreciate the public for their concern and love. All her children are being taken care of and we have not collected any 32 million from anybody nor are we stranded or begging the public in any form as regards to a certain GoFundMe account making rounds. Please everybody should be careful so that you don’t get scammed.

“The burial arrangement is in progress and we shall inform the general public once we have made full preparation. Please remember us in your prayers as we have seen how far the devil can go but in the name of Jesus we are victorious and the bible says that the steps of the righteous shines brighter and brighter unto a perfect day that is our assurance,”

Background:

Daily Trust reported the death of Osinachi Nwachukwu on April 8, 2022.

Few days after, there were revelations by family, friends and church members about the domestic abuse she had been allegedly subjected to by her husband

Subsequently, her husband Peter Nwachukwu, was arrested and later arraigned before a High Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) on a 23-count charge that bordered on culpable homicide.

He however, pleaded not guilty to all the allegations that were contained in the charge the Federal Government preferred against him.

Following Nwachukwu’s insistence of not being guilty, trial judge, Justice Njideka Nwosu-Iheme, in a short ruling, ordered his remand at the Kuje Correctional Centre, even as she adjourned the case till June 16 and 17 for trial.

The gospel musician came into fame with the hit gospel song, “Ekwueme”, which she paired with Prospa Ochimana.

Conclusion:

Checks by CDD/Daily Trust has shown that the GoFundMe account currently soliciting funds for the late Osinachi’s children was not authorized by the family, as such it is FAKE

FACT CHECK: Did High Court Nullify Ekiti APC Governorship Primary?

By Blog, Election, Fact Check, Fact Checks, Fake News, NewsNo Comments

Verdict: False

CLAIM:

A viral report claimed that the primary that produced Biodun Oyebanji as the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) for the Ekiti Governorship election holding this Saturday, 18 June, has been nullified by an Abuja High Court.

The rumor which was spread on social media and published by several blogs reads: “Less than 72 hours to the conduct of Saturday’s governorship election in Ekiti State, a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja on Thursday nullified the All Progressives Congress primaries that produced its candidate in the poll, Mr. Biodun Oyebanji.

“The court cited irregularities in the conduct of the primaries conducted to nominate Oyebanji.”

Verification Process:

Daily Trust observed the two-paragraph report was reproduced across all platforms that published it.

Debunking the news, the State Publicity Secretary of the party, Segun Dupe, urged Ekiti people and party members to “disregard the rumour and discountenance it as the forlorn wish of some desperate politicians in the state, which cannot come to pass.”

He said, “The warped rumour is a demarketing gimmick of some desperate opposition who are unmindful of the fact that they are causing further damage to their zero chances at the poll, instead of enhancing it.

“…there were some cases filed by some disgruntled elements regarding the governorship primaries we organized in January this year, which saw to the emergence of Biodun Abayomi Oyebanji as the candidate of our party, but none has gone beyond the preliminary stage and all of them have been transferred back to Ekiti for hearing.

“No High Court is sitting on any matter regarding our primary in Abuja as at today. Furthermore, every matter relating to the primary has been adjourned till September this year. To the best of our knowledge, none is up for hearing at the moment.

“The only one perhaps is in the wildest imagination of our detractors, which cannot see the light of day. Our party remains focused on the coming election and sure of untainted victory at the end.”

The results of the primary announced by the Jigawa State Governor and Chairman of the Primary Election Committee, Mohammed Badaru, showed that Oyebanji, a former Secretary to the State Government (SSG), defeated other aspirants to emerge winner of the election which held in January.

He polled 101,703 votes, while his closest challengers; Ojo Kayode had 767, Opeyemi Bamidele had 760 and Dayo Adeyeye polled 691 votes.

Conclusion:

Available facts have proven the purported nullification of the Ekiti State APC governorship primary to be false. Thus, the viral report is misleading.

FACT CHECK: Did INEC Officials Prevent Igbos From Registering for PVC in Lagos?

By Blog, Election, Fact Check, Fact Checks, Fake News, News, PublicaitonsNo Comments

Verdict: False

CLAIM:

A Facebook video was posted by one Umuchiukwu Writers with the caption “Igbos living in Lagos denied PVC registration by Federal Government. Only Biafra will save Biafrans.”

In the video, a voice was heard saying in Igbo that “We have not been allowed to register for PVC in Lagos and we have been here since 7am. INEC officials are only attending to those who speak in Yoruba and some Yoruba chiefs were present and allowing only Yorubas to register.”

Verification

It was obvious there was no queue nor did the video show any INEC official or Yoruba chiefs.

Daily Trust reached out to Umuchiukwu Writers to verify the authenticity of the video.

He said it was recorded “at Igbede and Ojo areas in the Ojo Local Government Areas of Lagos State on June 9, 2022.”

He however admitted that he was not present at the location.

“I received information from our Igbo brothers there,” he noted.

Meanwhile, in an interview with our correspondent, INEC National Electoral Commissioner for Information and Voter Education, Festus Okoye, denied that Igbo people were prevented from collecting PVCs.

He said, “The Commission and its officials will not engage in or tolerate any case of voter suppression. The commission has not received any official complaint of voter suppression other than the trending videos. Every Nigerian of registrable age living in any part of Nigeria is entitled to register.

“It’s a sovereign constitutional right. The CVR process has been on for 11 months. The present surge is a peculiar Nigerian 11th-hour syndrome.  We have deployed additional IVED, fingerprint scanners, and Thermal Printers to states of acute pressure.

“We are monitoring the CVR process and will explore all options and do whatever is necessary to assist Nigerians register.”

Conclusion

Daily Trust can confirm that the video posted does not have enough evidence to the claim that INEC officials and some Yoruba chiefs prevented Igbos from registering for PVCs.

FACT CHECK: Did APC Not Engage In Vote Buying As Ekiti Governor-Elect Claimed?

By Blog, Constitution, Election, Fact Check, Fact Checks, Fake News, General, News, Publicaitons, PublicationsNo Comments

VERDICT: FALSE

Claim:
The Ekiti State Governor-elect, Mr. Biodun Oyebanji, has claimed that the All Progressives Congress did not engage in vote buying during the June 18, 2022 governorship election which held in the state.
Oyebanji made the claim on Monday while briefing State House correspondents after he was presented to President Muhammadu Buhari by some party big-wigs led by the National Chairman, Senator Abdullahi Adamu, following his victory in the Saturday poll.


He said that as far as he was concerned, his party did not buy votes, while adding that he did
not witness the development in the polling unit where he voted in Ikogosi, Ekiti West LGA.


The governor-elect said he won the election based on the performance of the outgoing
administration in which he played a prominent role.

Verification Process:

In a bid to ascertain the veracity of the claim, Daily Trust looked at several reports by independent and non-partisan Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) and the media who observed the election.

While some of the reports revealed in details the parties involved in voter inducement along with their locations and amounts involved, some others generally agreed to the fact that there was vote-buying across party lines.

According to the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) who was on the ground to observe the election, its observers documented 41 instances of vote buying and selling at polling units in LGAs like Ado-Ekiti, Ijero, Ikole Irepodun/Ifelodun, Ise/Orun and Moba.

The statement noted that one of the observable patterns of vote buying was the collection of cash in brown envelopes, which was apparently meant to disguise the content of the envelopes in order to avoid arrest by the anti-corruption agencies.

Also, in a post-election statement issued by another independent observer group, Yiaga Africa, vote buying was reported by its observers in ​​Alowodolu/Ojo – The Apostolic P.S Compound with PU code 13/09/04/00 in Ijero Ward D of Ijero LGA.

“Party agents from APC were reportedly sharing N7,000 to voters who showed how their ballot paper was marked. A similar report on vote-buying by APC was received from Open Space At Bamitale Along St. Mary’s Road in Ikere.

“Also, in Ogidi – in Ipoti Ward A, party agents from PDP and SDP were seen bribing voters. At ​​C. A. C. Gramm. Sch. / Ola Oluwa II with PU code 014 in Ado-Ekiti, APC party agent was also reportedly giving N5,000 to voters who confirmed they had voted for the party,” it stated.

Conclusion

Based on evidence contained in reports groups that observed the governorship election, it is not true that the APC didn’t engage in vote buying as claimed by Oyebanji.

Chukwuma-Soludo

Did Soludo Say Peter Obi’s $20m Investment Is Now Worth $100m? Claim:

By Blog, Constitution, Election, Fact Check, Fact Checks, Featured, General, latest, NewsNo Comments

Claim:

A Facebook user, @Lamentations of a Bishop, on Sunday posted a story alleging that the current Anambra State governor Mr. Charles Soludo, said that Mr. Peter Obi’s $20 million investment in Anambra is worth $100 million today.

Verdict: FALSE

Verification: While verifying this, Daily Trust went through the verified Facebook and Twitter handles of the governor to see if he made such claims but nothing was found.

Further checks by Daily Trust revealed that the governor had gone to the comment section of the post to debunk the claim.

On his verified Facebook page, @Charles Chukwuma Soludo, the Anambra governor’s reply reads: “Where did you read or hear me make such comments. This Fake News has been roundly debunked by my team. We can always carry on with the campaign for our preferred candidates without consciously misleading the reading public. The report is false and never emanated from me,” he said.

Background

Peter Obi, a former governor of Anambra state is the presidential candidate of the Labour Party (LP) in the forth coming presidential election.

Mr. Obi is regarded as one of the successful businessmen in Nigeria with franchise spread across the country.

He is also the former governor of Anambra state.

Conclusion: Following the rebuttal by the Anambra state governor, Daily Trust affirms the claim to be FALSE.

This Fact Check is done in collaboration with the Center for Democracy and Development (CDD)