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Guber Poll: PDP Wins Oyo, Akwa Ibom, Ebonyi, APC Takes Lagos, Ogun, Kwara

Gubernatorial-as-they-stand

The Independent National Electoral Commission on Sunday started the announcement of the results of governorship and state Houses of Assembly elections held in the country on Saturday.

The results released so far revealed some surprises and upsets across the country. For instance, the ruling All Progressives Congress in Oyo State lost the governorship poll to the Peoples Democratic Party. The APC candidate, Adebayo Adelabu, backed by the incumbent Governor Abiola Ajimobi, lost scandalously to his PDP’s counterpart, Seyi Makinde, with a margin of 157, 635 votes. While Makinde polled 515,621 votes, Adelabu came second with 357,982 votes.

Also, as it was during the February 23 presidential and National Assembly elections in Kwara State where the incumbent Senate President, Bukola Saraki, lost his bid to return to the Senate, his party lost all elective positions in the March 9 polls.

The Kwara State APC governorship candidate, Abdulrahman Abdulrazak, swept the poll to beat his PDP counterpart, Abdulrazak Atunwa, with a margin of 216,792 votes.

Also, the APC governorship candidate in Lagos State, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, won a landslide victory over his closest rival, Jimi Agbaje of the PDP. Observers had expected Agbaje to give Sanwo-Olu a run for his money, but this was not to be as the political machinery of the national leader of the APC, Bola Tinubu that backed the new comer was too much for Agbaje.

The PDP candidate was beaten with over 500,000 votes.

But as the people of Rivers State were waiting for the outcome of the polls, INEC announced the suspension of the governorship and House of Assembly elections in the state till further notice.

It cited violence that marred the exercise as reason for its actions.

Protest from the national headquarters of the PDP is, however, trailing the electoral umpire’s decision.

However, INEC had declared winners in some of the 29 states where the governorship poll was conducted on Saturday as of the time of filing this report this morning. These states include Lagos, Kwara, Gombe, Enugu, Oyo, Abia, Kebbi, Jigawa, Katsina , Ogun, Akwa Ibom, Ebonyi and Niger.

Other states where the results have not been fully released include Benue, Nasarawa, Sokoto.

But the results so far declared have  stirred protest as opposition parties in some states rejected the outcome citing vote-buying, supporters’ harassment and alleged bias by the electoral umpire and the security agencies as reasons.

INEC declares Sanwo-Olu as new Lagos governor

INEC on Sunday declared the APC candidate, Sanwo-Olu, as the winner of the March 9 governorship election held in the state on Saturday.

Sanwo-Olu, who scored 739,445 out of the 977,476 total valid votes in the election, defeated 44 other candidates to emerge as the governor-elect in the state.

The candidate of the PDP in the election, Agbaje, polled the second highest votes in the election with 206,141 votes.

Declaring the result of the election at the state collation centre in Yaba at about 8.40pm on Sunday, the state Returning Officer, Prof. Eyitope Ogunbodede, said Sanwo-Olu, scored the highest number of votes to win the election.

Ogunbodede, who is the Vice-Chancellor of the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile Ife, said, “That Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu, of the All Progressives Congress, having satisfied the requirements of the law and scored the highest number of votes is hereby declared the winner and is returned elected.”

He said the number of registered voters was 6,505,512; number of accredited voters was 1,006,074; total number of votes cast was 998,715, rejected votes was 21,239, while the total number of valid votes was 977,476.

Ogunmodede pointed out that 31 party agents signed the result sheet.

Sanwo-Olu thanked residents of the state for electing him in the March 9 governorship election.

Addressing party stakeholders in Ikeja after he was declared the winner by INEC, Sanwo-Olu said he was honoured by the overwhelming support of residents.

He said though “the victory carries my name,” his success in the election was actually victory for all residents.

Sanwo-Olu said he viewed the mandate given to him as a call to service to improve the lives of the people.

“I accept the mandate given to me and I understand that it bestows the most profound honour and sober responsibility on me. I thank and commend those who contributed to this campaign. You have laboured and toiled countless hours and done so much.

“You have exerted yourself not just for me but because you believe in the vision that we share.

“You are too numerous to name at this time; in the next few days, I wish to personally thank each one of you for this progressive and collective efforts.

“Most of all, I must commend the voters and honour them; though this victory bears my name, the victory actually belongs to you dear Lagosians,” he said.

Sanwo-Olu thanked President Muhammadu Buhari, the APC National Leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, and the party National Chairman, Adams Oshiomhole, for believing in his vision.

He said he would not disappoint those who had invested their trust in him, as he was focused on development.

He faulted what he called unhealthy statements and actions made by some of his rivals before the election.

Sanwo-Olu said some of the statements and actions were capable of causing disunity in the state and affecting peaceful co-existence.

He said it was time for all to put the pre-election politics aside and join him in efforts to birth a better Lagos.

APC’s Abdulrazaq wins Kwara gov poll

In Kwara State, the APC governorship candidate, Abdulrazaq, has been declared winner of the governorship election.

Declaring the results of the poll on Sunday, the state Returning Officer and Vice-Chancellor of the Federal University, Lafia, Nasarawa State, Prof. Muhammad Liman, said Abdulrazaq polled 331,546 votes to emerge as the winner of the election.

His PDP counterpart, Atunwa, polled 114,754 votes to emerge as the runner-up.

From the official results declared in all the 16 LGAs in the state, Abdulrazaq led Atunwa with a margin of 216,792 votes.

Also, the APC beat the PDP in all the 16 Local Government Areas of the state and thus won all the seats in the state House of Assembly.

Though the PDP boycotted the venue where the result was announced, Saraki later congratulated the Kwara State Governor-elect, Abdulrahman Abdulrasaq, on his victory at the poll.

Saraki also congratulated the people of the state for coming out to exercise their franchise.

The Senate President wrote, “I thank all Kwarans, particularly the PDP supporters, who worked for the party in the just-concluded elections. My congratulations go to Abdulrahman Abdulrasaq and all those who emerged at all levels. I wish them all the best.”

PDP’s Makinde floors APC’s Adelabu in Oyo

Also, the PDP’s candidate in Oyo State, Makinde, was declared elected by INEC’s Returning Officer, Prof. Oluwatoyin Ogundipe, having polled the highest number of votes in the election.

Ogundipe is the Vice Chancellor, University of Lagos.

While Makinde secured 515,621 votes, his closest contestant, Adelabu of the APC, came second with 357,982 votes. Makinde led with 157,635 votes.

The results showed that out of the 33 LGAs in the state, Makinde won in 28 councils, including that of his rival’s, while Adelabu won in five LGAs.

While announcing the winner, Ogundipe said, “I state that Seyi Makinde of the PDP, having satisfied the requirements of the law and scored the highest number of votes, is hereby declared the winner and is returned elected.”

Ogundipe put the number of registered voters at 2,934,107 out of which 940,211 voters were accredited. Total valid votes were 916,860; total rejected votes, 20,688; while total votes cast stood at 937,545.

Meanwhile, out of the 32 seats in the state House of Assembly, the PDP won 25 seats, the APC secured five seats while the Action Democratic Party got one.

The state Resident Electoral Commissioner, Mutiu Agboke, who made the disclosure, stated that the commission was fair to all political parties.

He said the commission resisted intimidation from some quarters in respect of the polls, adding that “INEC will continue to do the right thing at the right time in the best interest of voters.”

However, there was palpable fear around Ibadan in the wake of the killing of a House of Representatives member from Lagelu/Akinyele Federal Constituency, Temitope Olatoye, aka Sugar.

As of 9pm on Sunday, our correspondents observed that the roads had been deserted as residents stayed indoors.

Earlier on Sunday, rumours were rife that the wife of a National Union of Road Transport Workers leader, Lamidi Mukaila, aka Auxiliary, was killed, but the Oyo State Police Command spokesperson, SP Fadeyi Olugbenga, dispelled the rumours.

He said it was an attempt to heat up the already tensed polity, urging the people to be calm.

APC’s Dapo Abiodun wins Ogun gov

Meanwhile, the governorship candidate of the APC in Ogun State, Dapo Abiodun, has emerged winner of the 2019 governorship.

The Returning Officer, Prof. Idowu Olayinka, who announced the result and declared Abiodun winner, said the APC governorship candidate polled 241,670 votes to defeat the candidate of the Allied Peoples Movement, Adekunle Akinlade, who scored 222,153, leaving a margin of 19,517 votes.

Olayinka, who is also the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ibadan, said the  APC won in 11 of the 20 Local Government Areas, while the APM had six LGAs.

Ugwuanyi triumphs over Ayogu Eze, wins Enugu gov poll

In Enugu State, the incumbent Governor Ifeanyi Ugwanyi of the PDP also won his re-election bid as he beat his opponents to win the governorship poll. Ugwuanyi cleared all the 17 Local Government Areas results.

Announcing the results, the state Returning Officer, who is also the Vice-Chancellor, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Prof. Joseph Ahaneku, said the PDP candidate polled 449,935 to defeat the APC’s Ayogu Eze who polled 10,423 to come a distant second.

Our correspondents reported that the results of the 17 LGAs as announced by Ahaneku showed that the PDP polled over 98 per cent of the total votes in the election.

Ahaneku noted that though the total accredited voters was 478,241, it was less than 30 per cent of the total registered voters in the state which, he said, stood at 1,944,803.

“By the power vested on me, I, Prof. Joesph Ahaneku, hereby declare Mr Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of the PDP, the winner of the March 9, 2019 governorship election held in Enugu State having scored the highest number of votes cast he is hereby returned elected,” he said.

Bagudu wins Kebbi gov poll again

INEC has also declared Governor Atiku Bagudu of the APC winner of Saturday’s governorship election in Kebbi State.

The results was announced at the state Collation Centre for the 2019 governorship election by the Collation Officer for Governorship and State Assembly Elections, Prof. Hamisu Bichi, on Sunday in Birnin Kebbi.

He said Bagudu scored 673,717 votes, while his closest rival, Isah Galaudu of the PDP, polled 106,633 votes.

Bichi said, “Atiku Bagudu of the APC, having certified the requirement of the law and scored the highest number of votes is hereby returned elected and declared the winner of the March 9, Saturday governorship election in the state.”

Bichi said 1,789,975 voters were registered; 820,078 accredited, while 814,084 votes were cast; with 793,388 valid votes and 20,696 votes rejected.

According to the results, Bagudu won in all the LGAs of the state.

INEC declares Inuwa Yahaya of APC winner

In Gombe State, Alhaji Inuwa Yahaya of the APC won the state governorship election.

The INEC Returning Officer in the state, Prof. Saminu Abdulrahaman, who declared the result in Gombe on Sunday, said Yahaya scored 364,179 votes to defeat his closest rival of the PDP, Usman Nafada, who polled 222,868 votes and was returned elected.

He said there were 1,394,386 registered voters, 627,457 accredited voters, 608,846 valid votes, 14,384 rejected votes and 623,230 total votes cast.

Abdulrahman, who is also the Vice-Chancellor, Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University, Bauchi, added that Yahaya won in 10 of the 11 LGAs of the state.

Ikpeazu wins Abia gov election, APC, APGA rejects result

Also, the candidate of the PDP in Abia State, Okezie Ikpeazu, has been declared the winner of the governorship election in the state.

INEC’s Returning Officer, Prof. Benjamin Ozumba, who is also the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, declared him winner after polling 261, 127 to defeat his closest rival and candidate of  the APC, Uche Ogah, who garnered 99,574 votes.

He also announced that the candidate of the All Progressive Grand Alliance, Alex Otti, polled 64, 366 votes to come third in the election.

Meanwhile, the candidates of the APC and APGA have called for the cancellation of the election.

Addressing journalists shortly after the results were declared in Umuahia, the state capital, the opposition candidates alleged that INEC breached its guidelines for the conduct of the elections in the state.

In a statement jointly signed by the candidates, they stated that they had expected INEC to cancel results from polling units where votes did not match what was on  the smart card readers, adding that reverse was the case.

The statement partly read, “The results were highly tempered with to favour the PDP, even where some of us in the opposition had warned that INEC connived with security agencies to change the result in favour of the PDP.

“We reject in totality the results of the 2019 governorship election as announced by INEC and demand its total cancellation in the entire state.”

Badaru wins re-election in Jigawa

Meanwhile, the incumbent Governor of Jigawa State, Alhaji Muhammad Badaru, has won the governorship election in the state.

The Returning Officer for the governorship election in Jigawa, Prof. Azubike Nwankwo, who is the Provost, Nigeria Defence Academy, Kaduna, declared the result in Dutse on Sunday.

Nwankwo said Badaru, of the APC, was returned elected with 810, 933 votes to beat his closest rival, Alhaji Aminu Ringim of the PDP, who scored 288, 356 votes, followed by Alhaji Bashir Adamu of the Social Democratic Party, who got 32,894 votes.

He explained that the total number of registered voters was 2,109,477, accredited voters, 1,169,924, total votes cast, 1, 163, 206, while valid votes stood at 1, 139, 054, and rejected votes, 24, 152.

The Returning Officer stated that the election was free and fair, adding that due process was followed before the declaration of the result.

Nwankwo had also announced that the APC won all the 30 seats for the state House of Assembly.

Emmanuel re-elected, wins in A’ Ibom

Meanwhile, the governorship candidate of the PDP in Akwa Ibom State, Governor Udom Emmanuel, has been re-elected for a second term in office.

Emmanuel secured 519,712 votes and won in the 30 LGAs in the governorship results announced by INEC, while his closest rival and candidate of the APC, Mr Nsima Ekere, garnered 171,978 and won only in Essien Udim, which is the LGA of the former Senate Minority Leader, Godswill Akpabio.

Declaring Emmanuel winner at 12.30am on Monday, the state Returning Officer, Prof. Faraday Osasere, the Vice-Chancellor, University of Benin, Benin, Edo State, said out of the 2,119,727 registered voters in the state, only 720,064 were accredited for the election, while the total vote cast was 712,037.

All other political party agents signed the result sheet with the exception of the APC state agent, Mr Sam Akpan, who walked out of the collation centre.

Akpan, however, rejected the results, claiming that they were not a true reflection of the exercise.

He called for the cancellation of the result of the governorship election in the state.

Bello floors Nasko to win re-election in Niger

Also, the Niger State Governor, Abubakar Bello, who contested for a second tenure on the ticket of the APC, has won the bid, according to the results of the Saturday polls announced by the Returning Officer, Prof. Angela Freeman-Mary.

Freeman-Mary, the Vice-Chancellor of the Federal University, Lokoja, Kogi State, who announced the result on Sunday in Minna, said Bello won the polls in all the 25 LGAs of the state.

According to the VC, Bello polled 526,412 votes as against Umar Nasko’s 298,065 thereby defeating the PDP candidate with a margin of 228,347 votes.

The result was declared in Minna at about 11pm on Sunday.

Umahi floors Ogbuoji, wins Ebonyi gov poll again

Governor David Umahi of Ebonyi State of the PDP has been declared winner of the state governorship poll.

The Returning Officer for the state governorship poll, Prof. Frank Chukwuemeka, announced Umahi winner on Sunday in Abakaliki.

According to the result, Umahi polled 393,043 votes to defeat his closest rival, Sonni Ogbuoji of the APC who polled 81,703 votes to emerge the winner.

“I, Prof. Frank Chukwuemeka, state Returning Officer for the Ebonyi State governorship election held on Saturday, March 9, hereby declare the candidate of the PDP, Chief Dave Umahi, winner of the governorship election having won the highest number of votes cast in the election.

“He has fulfilled the requirements of the law and is hereby declared winner and returned elected,” Chukwuemeka said.

APC’s Masari wins Katsina gov election

The Katsina State Governor, Aminu Masari, has won the governorship poll in all the 34 LGAs of the state announced by INEC on Sunday.

Masari, a former Speaker of the House of Representatives, sought re-election for another term of four years on the platform of the APC last Saturday.

The PDP’s candidate is Senator Yakubu Lado-Danmarke.

In the results announced by the State Returning Officer, Prof. Abdullahi Zuru, the APC scored 22,482 votes in Dutsi Local Government Area, while the PDP came second with 10,564 votes.

The re-elected governor was awaiting formal declaration of his victory by INEC as of the time of filing this report.

Ortom leads in Benue

Meanwhile, the governorship candidate of the PDP in Benue State, Mr Samuel Ortom, has won in nine of the 19 LGAs result declared as of the time of filing this report.

From the result so far announced on Sunday at the state headquarters of INEC in Makurdi, the Benue State capital, Ortom scored over 300,000 votes, while his closest rival, Mr Emmanuel Jime of the APC, won in 10 LGAs with a total votes of over 270,000.

The results of four remaining LGs were being awaited as of the time of filing the report.

APC sweeps Nasarawa gov poll

In Nasarawa State, the APC candidate in the governorship election, Abdullahi Sule, has been declared winner by INEC.

The APC candidate got 327,229 votes to beat his PDP challenger, David Ombugadu, who came a distant second with 184, 281 votes.

The state Returning Officer, Prof Abdullahi Bala, who is also the Vice-Chancellor of the Federal University of Technology, Minna, Niger State, declared the result some minutes to 1am on Tuesday.

Tambuwal leads in 12 LGAs

INEC has announced results of 20 out of 23 LGAs of Sokoto State in Saturday’s governorship election.

The News Agency of Nigeria reported that LGAs Collation Officers announced the results before the state’s Chief Returning Officer, Prof. Fatima Muktar, on Sunday in Sokoto.

Muktar is the Vice-Chancellor, Federal University, Dutse, FUD, Jigawa State.

In the results declared so far, Governor Aminu Tambuwal of the PDP  won  in 12 out of the 20 LGAs while the APC was leading in eight LGAs.

NAN reports that Tambuwal polled a total of 429, 526 votes while Alhaji Ahmad Aliyu of the APC scored 416, 082 votes in the declared results from the 20 LGAs received.

However, the PDP is leading the APC with a margin of 13,444 votes in the results so far declared.

The figure of cancelled votes so far is 50,530 at different polling units across the state based on the results announced.

NEC declares Bauchi gov poll inconclusive

However, the governorship election of Bauchi State has been declared inconclusive.

The Returning Officer for the state, Prof. Mohammed Kyari, made the announcement at exactly 12am on Tuesday.

He said that the total registered voters were 2, 323, 603, while the accredited voters stood at 1, 056, 729.

According to him, the candidate of the PDP,  Bala Mohammed, got 469, 512 votes to defeat Governor Mohammed Abubabakar of the APC, who scored 465, 453 votes.

He added that the total valid votes are 1, 026, 901, the number of rejected votes was 21, 419 while the number of  total votes cast was 1, 048, 220.

Kyari of the Federal University of Technology, Yola, Adamawa State, said he declared the poll inconclusive because the margin of lead between the PDP and the APC candidates was 4, 059 votes.

He added, “Secondly, the number of cancelled votes even without that of Tafawa Balewa Local Government Area which he had earlier cancelled was 45, 312.

“Thirdly, the total number of registered voters in the affected areas is 139, 240.

“Therefore, based on Section 26 Part 53 of the Electoral Act, I hereby declare this result inconclusive.”

He therefore directed INEC to immediately conduct a re-run in the affected areas within 21 days.

APC leads in Borno, wins 24 declared LGAs results

The candidate of the APC, Prof. Babagana Zulum, has maintained his lead in the ongoing collation of results of  Saturday’s governorship election in Borno State.

The News Agency of Nigeria reported that the APC candidate won 24 of the 27 LGAs in the ongoing collation exercise at the Kashim Ibrahim College of Education, Maiduguri.

The collation exercise presided over by the INEC Returning Officer in the state, Prof. Alhassan Gali, was conducted smoothly in the presence of party agents, election observers, security agents and journalists.

NAN reports that election results from 24 of the 27 LGAs of the state were submitted for collation by their respective returning officers.

The governorship election results so far collated indicated that Zulum garnered more votes than his closest opponent, Muhammad Imam of the PDP.

The results as announced by the Returning Officer in charge of Nganzai, Dr Ibrahim  Mustapha, showed that the APC candidate scored 20, 196 as against the 907 votes scored by the PDP candidate.

INEC suspends Rivers polls, PDP fumes

Meanwhile, INEC has suspended the governorship and House of Assembly elections in Rivers State till further notice.

The commission premised its action on the widespread disruption of elections and violence.

INEC has, therefore, set up a fact-finding committee to assess the situation and report back within 48 hours.

This is contained in a statement issued on Sunday by INEC National Commissioner and chairman of its Information and Voter Education Committee, Festus Okoye.

The statement partly read, “Initial reports suggest that violence occurred in a substantial number of polling units and collation centres, our members of staff have been taken hostage and materials including result sheets have either been seized or destroyed by unauthorised persons.

“In addition, safety of our workers appears to be in jeopardy all over the state and the commission is concerned about the credibility of the process.

“Consequently, at a meeting held today, Sunday, March 10, 2019, the commission has decided to suspend all electoral processes in the state until further notice.

“This is in line with Section 26 of the Electoral Act, 2010 (as amended) and Clause 47(e) of the regulations and guidelines of the commission.

“The commission has also established a fact-finding committee to assess the situation and report back within 48 hours.”

However, the PDP has charged INEC to end what it described as manipulative schemes and immediately declare the result.

The party rejected INEC’s decision to suspend the electoral process in the state, after it claimed that results had been collated.

The National Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Mr Kola Ologbondiyan, in a statement in Abuja on Sunday, asked President Muhammadu Buhari to caution the security agencies in the state.

He said, “Our party contends that elections have been concluded in Rivers State; results of the Governorship and House of Assembly polls have been declared at the various polling units, wards and local government collation centres and all returning officers and political parties in the ballot conclusively have the figures.

“It is therefore directly incumbent on INEC to declare the final results instead of deliberately creating openings for the subversion of the final process; a development, which exposes the commission’s complicity with the Buhari Presidency and the APC to enmesh the election into unnecessary crisis.”

Segun Olugbile, Olusola Fabiyi, John Ameh, John Alechenu, Friday Olokor, Mudiaga Affe, Success Nwogu, Tunde Ajaja, Afeez Hanafi,  Olaleye Aluko, Ademola Babalola,  Ogbonna Casmir, Ogbonnaya Ikokwu,  Olaide Oyelude, Tunji Bosun, Armstrong Bakam, Enyioha Opara, Patrick Odey, Edward  Nnachi John Charles and Umar Muhammed    (Punch)

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Akpabio: Court Stops INEC From Issuing Certificate Of Return To PDP’s Chris Ekpeyong

Godswill-Akpabio                                                    Godswill Akpabio

 

By Alex Enumah in Abuja

 

Justice Valentine Ashi of a High Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), on Friday restrained the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) from issuing its Certificate of Return to Peoples Democratic Party’s (PDP) candidate, Chris Ekpeyong, winner of the Akwa Ibom North West Senatorial District Seat in the just concluded National Assembly election.

Justice Ashi gave the restraining order in a short ruling on an ex parte motion filed by the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate, Senator Godswill Akpabio.

Akpabio in the suit No: FCT/HC/M/2680/19 and filed on February 28 prayed the court for, “An order granting leave to him to apply for a judicial review for the issuance of a writ of Mandamus, prohibition, injunction and other declarative reliefs sought against the respondent (INEC).”

He also prayed the court to direct the respondent to stay further action “particularly further action in respect of issuance of certificate of return to any candidate in respect of the seat of senator representing Akwa Ibom North West Senatorial district on the account of election held on the 23rd February, 2019.”

The ex parte application which was supported by an affidavit deposed to by one Daniel Idoko, was argued by Akpabio’s lawyer, Sunday Ameh SAN.

In a short ruling Justice Ashi, held that the case of Akpabio is meritorious and that there is need to keep things in status quo.

“Leave is hereby granted to the applicant to apply for judicial review for the issuance of a writ of Mandamus, prohibition, injunction and other declaratory reliefs against the respondent.”

“Leave granted shall operate as stay of further action of the respondent and particularly in respect of issuance of certificate of return to any candidate in respect of the seat as sought by the applicant,” Justice Ashi held.

While adjourning the matter till March 8 for hearing of the substantive suit, the judge however directed that parties must first address him on the issue of jurisdiction on the next sitting.  (ThisDay)

 

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Presidential Poll Result: I’ll Not Mortgage The People’s Mandate – Atiku|RN

•Laments arrest of his son-in-law, financial director

 

Ndubuisi Orji, Abuja

 

ThePeoples Democratic Party (PDP) presidential candidate, former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, has said he will not mortgage the mandate of Nigerians as freely expressed in the February 23 presidential poll.

Atiku , in a statement by his media aide, Paul Ibe, yesterday night , said the assurance is against the backdrop of the  arrest of his son in-law and finance director of his group of companies,  Alhaji Babalele Abdullahi, in Abuja,  on Saturday, by operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

The statement read : “In a desperate move to have Atiku Abubakar concede and congratulate Gen. Muhammadu Buhari, officials of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) at about 8.30am today (Saturday) invaded the Maitama residence of Babalele. They were however not given access into the house until his lawyers arrived.

“The EFCC agents numbering about two dozen came in 2 regular vehicles, an 18-seater Toyota bus (registration Abuja CS 522 RSH) and a hilux van.

“They came with a search warrant to search the house and office of Babalele and found nothing incriminating.

“They then proceeded to his office at Oakland Centre in Maitama and found nothing incriminating there. However, they took away some documents of landed property.

“Not done, the EFCC officials stormed his Wuse residence where they again found nothing incriminating after the search.

“Afterwards, Babalele was taken away to the EFCC office in Wuse to make a statement alongside Mr. Lawan Ayuba.

“It was gathered that the petition relied upon to invade the residence and office of Babalele was authored by a brother of the wife of President Buhari. As a law abiding citizen, Atiku Abubakar recognizes the constitutional role of the EFCC and indeed any other agency of the government to carry out investigations, but will not be cowed by any attempt to blackmail him into mortgaging his mandate.”    (The Sun)

 

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NEXT LEVEL: The Next Four Years Will Be Tough, Buhari Warns |The Republican News

                                            President Muhammadu Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari says the new four-year mandate given to his administration by Nigerians will be tough as he pursues his campaign promises of securing the country, transforming the economy and the fight against corruption.

The President stated this at a special meeting with his cabinet ministers, who were in the State House, Abuja, on Friday to congratulate him on his electoral victory.

The Independent National Electoral Commission had, on Wednesday, declared President Buhari, candidate of the All Progressives Congress, winner of the 2019 presidential election held on February 23.

Buhari was declared re-elected, having polled 15,191,847 votes, winning in 19 states, to defeat other 72 candidates including Atiku Abubakar, the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party who scored 11, 255,978 votes.

The President said: “My last lap of four years I think is going to be tough because people are very forgetful – that was why wherever I went I reminded them of the campaign by our party of the three fundamental issues – security because you have to secure a country or an institution to manage it properly.

“If you don’t secure it you can’t manage it no matter how much propaganda you put in place.

“Secondly the economy, the unemployed able bodies is the problem of this country as a whole – more than 60 per cent are youths – that meant 35 years and below – they need to be kept busy.

“I realised that and I think God had our prayers that the two previous rainy seasons were good and we had the for sight to get the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development and the Central Bank to try and give soft loans to farmers so that able bodies that have land can go back to land.’’

The President, who also spoke on his campaign tour, stated that the successful completion of the tour had proven the opposition wrong that he was unfit to govern the nation.

He said the campaign tour did not only prove that he was medically fit but a clear indication that he was ready to continue in leading Nigeria for the next four years.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the highlight of the event was the presentation of congratulatory cards to the president by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha and the Head of Civil Service of the Federation, Mrs Winfred Oyo-Ita.

(NAN)

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Oshiomhole Mocks Atiku: You’re Destined Never To Be Nigeria’s President |RN

Romanus Ugwu

The All Progressives Congress (APC) National Chairman, Adams Oshiomhole, has said that the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, is destined never to be the president of Nigeria.

He said that his desperation, evidenced by his penchant for jumping from one political party to the other would continue to be his greatest undoing.

Speaking during a world media briefing at the party’s headquarters, the former governor of Edo State, said that apart from portraying himself as an unreliable politician and fighting his boss in desperation, the ruling party was ready to meet Atiku in court.

He, however, admitted that the recently-concluded presidential and National Assembly elections were not perfect just like it happens in every other election elsewhere in the world.

He alleged that the party’s senatorial candidate in Akwa-Ibom State, former governor Godswill Akpabio was rigged out.    (The Sun)

 

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Fr. Mbaka Celebrates Buhari’s Victory, Says God Has Answered My Prayers |RN

 

Raphael Ede, Enugu

 

The Spiritual Director Adoration Ministry, Enugu Nigeria (AMEN), Reverend Fr. Ejike Mabaka, is celebrating the re-election of President Muhammadu Buhari, saying that God has confirmed his prophecy.

Fr. Mbaka who stated this during his Wednesday midweek prayers, said that God of Adoration Ministry is a big miracle. “Our God is a God that answerth prayers. God has answered us again.

“I am happy; I am happy that my God has answered my prayer. Our God has answered our prayer.”

The Catholic priest said that what happened in the re-election of Buhari should serve as lessons to Nigerian politicians.   (The Sun)

 

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Kwara Central: I Was Rigged Out , Says Saraki |The Republican News

Fred Itua, Abuja 

Senate President, Bukola Saraki, has revealed how he lost his third term re-election bid to the chamber.

According to the Kwara Central senator, inadequacies, including Card Readers not used in over 70 per cent of his polling units, multiple voting, over-voting and other discrepancies, aided his defeat. 

He stated that in spite of the reported inadequacies that attended the presidential and National Assembly elections in Kwara State, he wishes the candidates who emerged from the election the best of luck.

Saraki, in a statement signed by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Yusuph Olaniyonu, stated that while the election was generally peaceful, he still had issues with the outcome.

He added that the state chapter of his party, the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), will take a position on the right response to these inadequacies.

“However, whatever the final outcome of the election, I wish the candidates that have emerged all the best in their attempts to serve our people. It is my prayers that the good people of Kwara state will always have the best from any government both at state and federal levels.

“As a product of a family and a political structure that is, from its foundation, devoted to the service and development of our state and its people, it is my wish that our people will always have a good deal at all times. The new development will even provide the people the opportunity to compare and contrast. After all, the people who have emerged from last Saturday’s election are not my enemies. They are fellow Kwarans.

“As we prepare for the March 9, governorship and House of Assembly elections, let me reiterate my position that the candidates of the PDP in the election represent the best materials for our dear state, Kwara.

“Therefore, I enjoin our people to come out en mass on election day and vote for them. I am going to work with our party leaders to further sell the PDP candidates to the public.

“I thank all Nigerians for their goodwill and to enjoin all of us that as we patiently await the outcome of the Presidential election, we pray for peace, unity and genuine development in our country. It is also our prayers that, at all times, the wish of the people would always prevail in the choice of the leadership and the electorate will always enjoy the benefit of good governance,” Saraki stated.   (The Sun)

 

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