According to reports, one Prof Peter Ogban of the University of Calabar, Cross River State, has been sentenced to three years imprisonment for electoral fraud, which he committed during the 2019 elections in the state.
The Punch newspaper reported that Ogban, who is a Professor of Soil Physics and Conservation acted as the Collation/Returning Officer during the National Assembly election, and stood trial on two counts of manipulating and falsifying scores of election results in Oruk Anam and Etim Ekpo Local Government Areas in favour of the All Progressives Congress, (APC).
The Judgment which was passed on Thursday, by Justice Augustine Odokwo said it was proved beyond reasonable doubts that the accused was guilty of the charges and accordingly sentenced him to three years imprisonment and a fine of N100,000 for the two counts, respectively
Prof Ogban pleading for Mercy said that, “If I lose my source of income, it means all of my dependents I have mentioned will suffer, especially the condition of my aged mother”.
Ogban added that, “I should be pardoned for the inability to do this which is why I am here today. I plead that you grant me 100 percent mercy and allow me to go and continue with my responsibilities”.
This judgement from the High Court has gladdened the hearts of the Peoples Democratic Party, as they commended the judiciary for its courage to stand on the side of the people to jail the Professor.
This was revealed in a statement by the Party’s National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan.
The statement read that, “It is shameful that individuals who had attained the peak of enviable career in the academia could submit themselves as willing tools in the hands of a fraudulent, debased and manipulative political party to alter election results and subvert the collective will of the people in the 2019 elections”.
The statement added that, “Such individuals can now see the deplorable situation of economic depression, excruciating hardship, terrorism, killings, kidnappings, social and infrastructural decay, which their fraudulent and unpatriotic action has plunged our nation”.