The Court of Appeal sitting in Sokoto have dismiss the judgement delivered by the Zamfara High Court allowing the All Progressive to partake in the 2019 elections in Zamfara State.
The appeal was filed by Sen. Kabiru Marafa, Chairman of the Senate Committee on Petroleum (Downstream) and 129 others through his Counsel, Mr Mike Ozheokome , SAN.
Respondents are Kabiru Liman-Danalhaji and 139 others represented by Mr Mahmud Magaji SAN as lead Counsel.
Delivering the lead judgment, which was adopted by two other Justices Tijjani Abubakar and Jamilu Tukur, Justice Tom Yakubu, held that the lower court failed in its duty to properly evaluate the evidence before it.
Yakubu said judges have the legal power to produce judgment and reach decisions with reason, noting that in the instance case it was not done.
“I am convinced that the lower Court has failed to evaluate the evidence before reaching the decision.
”Based on available facts the respondents did not contradict the INEC evidence on conducting the said primary election” Yakubu said.
The Presiding judge, said “documented evidence has upper consideration than oral ones”.
Justice Yakubu held that the plaintiffs being card-carrying party members and aspirants in the said primary election have legal capacity to institute the suit.
He added that Federal, States and FCT High Courts have jurisdiction to entertain such matter.
The judges agreed that the judgment should serve as “bitter lesson” for political parties as they ought to follow legitimate guidelines and rules.
“Domestic affairs of political party activities must act within the confines of the law in dealing with party members and elections” the judges agreed.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) report that a Zamfara High Court recognised the primary election the produced governorship, state and national assembly candidates held by APC in the state and declared that INEC accepts the party candidates for the elections.
Unsatisfied with State High Court decision, the appellants, approached the appeal court challenging the decision on the ground that the State High Court lacked jurisdiction to entertain the suit among others.NAN recalled that similar case was instituted before the same appeal court by Rep. Aminu Jaji, a Governorship aspirant and member representing Kauran Namoda/Birnin Magaji Federal Constituency and was dismissed after Jaji withdrew. (DailyAdvent)
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Mohammed Abubakar, governor of Bauchi state, has suffered three defeats in the space of two weeks — with another one looming.
The governor, who is seeking reelection under the All Progressives Congress (APC), was first defeated during the March 9 governorship poll. He garnered 465,453 votes to come second to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP’s) Bala Mohammed who got 469,512 votes.
He then got a temporary reload when a federal high court in Abuja granted his request, suspending the collation of the remaining results of the election until the determination of a suit he filed. But for how long?
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) continued with the supplementary election in the state and Abubakar was again defeated. The PDP candidate polled 6,376 votes to leave the governor following closely with 5,117 votes.
Back to the court case, at its sitting on Monday, the federal high court struck out the governor’s application seeking to stop the collation of the remaining result — in Tafawa Balewa LGA.
Although the result of the remaining LGA has not been announced, there is a slim chance Abubakar is going to survive the process.
Tafawa Balewa has a total of 22,759 registered voters, according to figures released by INEC and the sum of the votes in the two elections show he is losing with a margin of 5,318. Will the governor escape by the skin of his teeth or is disaster looming for him? (The Cable)
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The governor of Plateau state, Simon Lalong has been declared the winner of Saturday’s governorship election in the state.
The governor, who contested under the All Progressive Congress (APC), secured a second term mandate by defeating his opponent Jeremiah Useni of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
The state’s Returning Officer who is also the vice chancellor of Benue state University of Agriculture, Makurdi, Richard Kimbir, made the announcement on Sunday at exactly 4:00 a.m, at the Independent Electoral Commission Headquarters (INEC) in Jos Plateau state.
The electoral commission, INEC, had two weeks ago declared the state’s governorship election inconclusive as the margin of victory was less than the cancelled votes.
The supplementary elections were held on Saturday in 40 polling units across nine local governments.
While declaring the result, the returning officer said Mr Lalong having satisfied the requirements of the law is hereby declared the winner.
He polled 595,582 votes while Mr Useni scored 546,813 votes.
The Action Democratic Party (ADP) candidate, Jonathan Temlong, came third with 4,670 votes
Below are the details of the declared results.
PLATEAU STATE GOVERNORSHIP ELECTION FINAL RESULT
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)
There is palpable apprehension over the results of the presidential and National Assembly elections conducted by the Independent National Electoral Commission [INEC] on February 23, 2019.
Sources have revealed that fear of cancellation of the election result is looming as, 12 days after, INEC has no result sheets for inspection by the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party [PDP], Alhaji Atiku Abubakar.
That court order is reportedly causing tension in INEC as to what to do.
It was also gathered that, soon after the court ruling, INEC on Wednesday ordered its legal department to look into the ruling to advise it appropriately, a source in the know revealed.
It is now two weeks after the conduct of the elections but it seems the Electoral Commission does not have full results in its kitty for inspection.
Worse still is the fact that INEC does not have result sheets and other materials it used for collation of the results, causing anxiety and fears of annulment of elections aftermath of court ruling on Wednesday.
Even of concern is why INEC has yet to provide details of the outcome of the polls either on its website or at its state offices.
Checks conducted through INEC online portal, calls to its states’ offices, wards, local governments, federal constituencies and senatorial districts showed no physical collation or online release of the results.
This is causing fears the election results may have been cooked as efforts were rather placed on declaring winners than following processes as allowed by extant laws before declaration of election results could be done.
When Daily Mail enquired from Oluwole Osaze-Uzi, INEC’s Director of Voter Education and Publicity, it was not successful.
Also, attempts to speak with Festus Okoye, INEC’s National Commissioner on Voter Education was also unsuccessful as his phone rang out.
But several sources told Daily Mail that it should normally take few weeks to collate all election materials “owing to the magnitude of the election and the materials used.
“Nigeria is a large country, we shouldn’t be hasty in some issues but I can agree with you that at least all the materials and equipment used should have been at states’ offices.”
Asked why state offices are yet to have the equipment and materials, he said state offices should be asked or INEC “higher authority would be in a position to answer that.”
A source at the legal department of INEC told Daily Mail on phone that “it was always going to be tough providing the materials the court has ordered.
“I don’t know why materials used during the election have not be submitted but I am not in a position to speak – I am in the legal department, my mandate is not to speak on issues like this.”
According to her, “There should be thing to inspect, in fact all things being sought should be available for a petitioner to examine – that’s what all relevant laws in the country says.”
When asked what if the petitioner cannot be provided the materials being sought, she responded, “That is left for the court to decide, but it could mean cancellation of result because you can’t announce nothing for something.” (ElombahNews)
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The governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress in Ogun State, Dapo Abiodun, has said the contention over his academic credentials is an attempt at mudslinging, adding that he never claimed to have graduated from the Obafemi Awolowo University (formerly University of Ife).
A suit filed earlier this month at a High Court in Abuja sought Abiodun’s disqualification from the governorship race for allegedly giving “false information” in the academic qualification he submitted to the Independent National Electoral Commission
Abiodun, in an appearance on Sunday Politics, a live programme on Channels Television, however, said he had never misrepresented his educational credentials to anyone.
The APC candidate stated, “I never claimed to have finished from the University of Ife (now OAU). I did go to school in Ife. I went to school in the University of Ife but I didn’t graduate from the University of Ife. I never claimed to have obtained a degree from the University of Ife.”
When asked specifically about the Bachelor of Arts in Accounting degree he claimed to have, Abiodun said he would not comment further.
When also asked to state the school he earned his degree from, the APC candidate said doing so would not be proper since the matter was in court.
“But that (degree) is not from Ife. This has all been an attempt to mudsling and confuse the electorate, and it’s bundled with a lot of half-truths.
“I never claimed to have studied Accounting at the University of Ife. I never claimed to have graduated from the University of Ife. So, this issue has been presented as the presenter wanted it presented. I do have a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in Accounting and I would like to stop at that.
“The electorate know that I went to school and I have not misrepresented to anyone about my degrees. But it would be convenient for those who are intimidated and afraid of my electoral success to continue to attempt to disparage me and to present the matter as falsely as it suits them. The facts are being distorted but we will leave the matter since it is in court.”
Abiodun also said the APC chieftain, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, was not responsible for his victory at the party’s primary in Ogun State as reported in some quarters.
The APC candidate has been rejected by Governor Ibikunle Amosun, who has endorsed Adekunle Akinlade of the Allied Peoples Movement as his candidate.
Abiodun further denied claims that he won the primary as a result of his alleged closeness to Tinubu and a former Ogun State governor, Chief Olusegun Osoba.
He said, “These are accusations that have been thrown all over the place and it is not unusual in politics for people to mudsling and say things to try and bring the other person down. It’s convenient for people to say one is favoured.
“I don’t see how Asiwaju, who is our leader, favouring me, had influenced the elections. I never saw any endorsement before my election.
“Chief Osoba is the leader of the party in the state. He took me by the hand because I am now the candidate of the party, so everybody in the party must now support me. That is the way it works. The governor (Ibikunle Amosun) has chosen not to support me. Ideally, my governor and I should be on the same page.
“So, if you have emerged through a process and you have now become the candidate of the party, everybody who is your leader in that party in that state (and) outside that state, in that geopolitical zone, should be supporting you. Anyone not supporting you amounts to something else.”
Asked to confirm if he was the favourite of the APC National Chairman, Adams Oshiomhole, in the primary, Abiodun said, “I don’t know about ‘favoured candidate.’ I don’t think primary elections are won by favoured candidates. Adams Oshiomhole did not come to conduct my elections in Ogun. I don’t see how anyone would begin to accuse Adams Oshiomhole as favouring me in place of some other persons.” (Punch)
National Chairman, All Progressives Congress, Adams Oshiomhole
Kamorudeen Ogundele, Abuja
The All Progressives Congress is worried by the decision of some aggrieved members, including the Ogun State Governor, Senator Ibukunle Amosun, and his Imo State counterpart, Rochas Okorocha, to shun the APC governorship candidates in their states, The PUNCH has learnt.
Some members, who were aggrieved by the party’s primaries, had vowed to work against the APC candidates in their states.
Besides the two governors, some lawmakers, who could not secure the party’s tickets have also vowed to work against the party’s candidates, except the President.
The APC National Chairman, Mr. Adams Oshiomhole, had earlier on Wednesday said the party could win the governorship elections in Imo and Ogun without the support of Okorocha and Amosun.
It was, however, learnt that despite the statement of Oshiomhole, the party leaders were concerned that some aggrieved members could spoil the chances of the APC.
This, a source said, informed the decision of the party to convene a consultative forum with governorship candidates, state chairmen and secretaries at the national secretariat of the party in Abuja on Thursday.
The source stated, “The party is disturbed by the tales from some states and decided to tackle the issues head-on so as not to play into the hands of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party.
“We know the party is waiting in the wings and looking for those who will be spoilers among us, so we have decided to be ahead of them.”
Another chieftain of the party, who would not want his name revealed because of the sensitive nature of the issue, cited Imo, Ogun and Zamfara states as places with high number of dissenters.
Okorocha, Amosun and the Zamfara State Governor, Abdul-Azeez Yari, are aggrieved that their preferred candidates did not get the tickets of the party.
The source said, “In Imo, Governor Rochas Okorocha has allowed his son-in-law, Uche Nwosu, to pick the nomination form of another party while he remains in the APC to contest the senatorial seat. We see this as handwriting that the governor will work against the party in the governorship election.
“His position and body language is sending wrong signals to our members, so we need to quickly move in to motivate our members in order to heal many wounds as may be possible. Many of them think the crisis must be handled fast to avoid a gale of defections.
“Also in Ogun, the governor has said he is working towards the re-election of President Buhari but said he would work against the party’s governorship candidate.”
Plateau Governor, Simon Lalong, confirmed this fear in his opening remark at the consultative meeting.
Lalong said, “We have started to hear people say that they will campaign for the president, not the governor. The party structure is one and if they are not going to campaign for the governor, don’t campaign with us.
“Raise another structure in Abuja and remain in Abuja because if you come you are likely to dilute the message of the APC.”
Lalong urged the APC to release the campaign council so as to start working for the party.
“That is why I am also of the opinion that the earlier you release the campaign council, the better. Some of the items we intend to build into our campaign slogan are also for the president,” he added.
According to a communiqué signed by the APC National Publicity Secretary, Mallam Issa Lanre-Onilu, the consultative meeting resolved that party leaders must campaign for all candidates of the party (presidential, governorship and legislative positions).
“A situation where leaders engage in selective support by picking and choosing candidates to campaign for and support is anti-party.
“The Enugu State Chairman, Ben Nwoye, distanced the state chapter from the condemnable actions and utterances of a senatorial aspirant in the state, Mr Osita Okechukwu,” the communiqué stated.
The meeting also called on governorship candidates to run an issue-based campaign centred on the unprecedented achievements of the President Muhammadu Buhari administration which is evident in all the states of the federation.
It urged the party’s governorship candidates to run an inclusive campaign by bringing onboard former aspirants.
The communiqué added, “The party’s governorship and other stakeholders were also encouraged to domesticate ongoing peace and reconciliation efforts by the National Working Committee.
“The consultative meeting passed a vote of confidence in the NWC led by the National Chairman, Adams Oshiomhole. The NWC was urged to continue its effort to protect the best interest of the party and pursue efforts to achieve peace and reconciliation in the party.”
Speaking earlier at the opening, Oshiomhole said the consultative meeting was called to get feelers from states and to chart a way forward for the party’s victory in the 2019 general elections.
He lamented that there were some aggrieved members working with governors in states ruled by the opposition to ensure the APC did not have candidates.
“I am aware that we have some instances where some people have to go to court. And they are in two parts. There are some who are asking the court to declare them as the winner…where people are going to court to claim that there were no primaries such persons are not looking for solutions. Such persons are more or less agents of the opposition because if the court were to uphold their prayers, it means our party would have no candidate in such states. And the implication is that opposition will win such states.”
Oshiomhole said members had the responsibility to work wholeheartedly to deliver our candidates in their respective states.
“To be honest, l think that each and every one of you has one important role to play. Your actions could help the process of reconciliation and it could also deepen division. It would be helpful. No matter what anybody from outside who is helping you to reconcile with those who contested with you, your action would be far more potent in the process.”
Oshiomhole urged the candidates to woo over those who contested the party’s tickets against them.
“For example, in constituting your campaign organisation, if you find that there were those who wanted to be governors like you and who indeed have what it takes to be governors but the system can only produce one candidate, l think it would be best for you to identify such persons and bring them close and integrate them into your campaign organisation or if possible ask them to head the campaign.”
Also speaking, the Niger State Governor, Mohammed Bello, stressed the need to bring back aggrieved members.
“What we should do is to extend hands of fellowship to them and like the national chairman said, make them part of your campaign council. It will help to douse tension and give them a sense of belonging so that by God’s grace when we win in 2019, we must carry them along.
“The reconciliation committee is a good effort but we should set up similar committees at the state level. What we are doing in Niger State which we feel can help in other states is to refund the money they used in buying the forms. It will help douse a lot of tension. It is good that we are one united APC and together on one platform.” (Punch)
The governorship candidate of the Social Democratic Party in Osun State, Senator Iyiola Omisore, has said that he opted to support the candidate of the All Progressives Congress, Alhaji Gboyega Oyetola, in the rerun election in the state because the leadership of the Peoples Democratic Party in the state said they did not need his support.
Omisore said this in Osogbo on Thursday during a meeting with members of the SDP from across the 30 local government areas of the state.
Omisore, who defected from the PDP to the SDP some months before the election, said that former Vice President Atiku Abubakar wanted to come and discuss with him before the rerun when he came to Osogbo but he (Atiku) was prevented from coming by the leadership of the PDP in the state.
A former Nigerian Ambassador to the Philippines, Dr Yemi Farounbi, had said this while narrating why Omisore decided to work for the APC candidate in the rerun supplementary poll held on September 27.
Farounbi said the same thing and Omisore, while addressing the party members, said he adopted everything the former envoy had said.
He said the party opted to support the candidate of the party that was ready to implement the manifestos of the SDP because the party was for the best interest of the majority of the people.
Omisore said, “I want to adopt all what Dr Farounbi said. We gave them (APC and PDP) our manifesto. We dwelled on payment of arrears of salaries, pensions and gratuities, on local content, employment for our youths and the reorganisation of the educational system, among others.
“We went to negotiation with a clear mind that Osun must be free and thank God our coalition has produced a new future for the state.
“In addition to what Dr Faroumbi said, the National Chairman of the APC, Adams Oshiomole, said clearly that our discussion was devoid of any financial commitment. He said they were ready to work.”
Speaking earlier, Farounbi had explained that the SDP leaders decided to support any political party that was ready to put the people of the state first, saying Omisore earned his respect more because he was selfless in arriving at who to support.
He said the issue of arrears of salaries, pensions and gratuities which had impoverished workers and pensioners was given priority. The reorganisation of the education sector and local content were also prominent on their agenda.
Farounbi said, “Apart from these, we also said the state must return to 6-3-3-4. That contracts and services must be given to Osun indigenes; that infrastructural development and food security must be given priority because our people must not be hungry and they agreed.
“The Senate President, Senator Bukola Saraki, was the first to come and he came from the airport to Ile-Ife with some senators and Dr Doyin Okupe. We gave him our manifesto and we waited for 24 hours but no response. We heard that they were saying that we wanted to reap where we did not sow. We heard that they said they would win without us and all that.
“Also, former Ogun State Governor, Gbenga Daniel, who is the director general of Atiku Abubakar Presidential Campaign Organisation, called and said they were in Osogbo and they would come to see us. But they did not come.
“But former Vice President Atiku Abubakar called and expressed his regret for not being able to come. He said he wanted to come but the leadership of the PDP in Osun State said they should not come because they didn’t need us. That we should go and do anything we liked.” (Punch)