Joe Effiong, Uyo
Despite declaring he had withdrawn from the court-ordered rerun election in Akwa Ibom North West (Ikot Ekpene) senatorial district, the Minister Niger Delta Affairs, Sen. Godswill Akpabio, on Saturday still managed to poll 6,903 votes.
However, his success was a far cry from that of his traducer, Sen Chris Ekpenyomg of the PDP who polled 19, 924 votes to emerge winner in the Saturday election.
Adding the rerun election result held only in Essien Udim to those of the other nine local government areas in the senatorial district, which the appeal court had left intact, Akpabio still came a distant second with 83,820 votes as against Ekpenyong’s 134,717 votes.
Other APC candidates, Mr Emmanuel Akpan for Ikot Ekpene federal constituency and Mr Nse Ntuen of Essien Udim state constituency, who claimed to have withdrawn from the race, did equally fare better.
While the current member of the House of Representatives from the area, Mr Nsikak Ekong of the PDP polled 22, 235 to add to his previous votes taking the tally to 45,366 votes, the immediate past House of Reps member, Mr Emmanuel Akpan, of the APC, ironically, from Essien Udim, got only 6,003 like Akpabio; his total votes placed him in a distant second position with 22, 757 votes.
Nse Ntuen, the erstwhile factional speaker of Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly, whose attempt to return to the state House of Assembly ran into a hitch during the March 2019, suffered a final defeat with only 7, 108 votes against his PDP opponent, Mr Esse Umoh, who scored 18,999 votes and was declared the winner.
All the results announced at the various collation centres in Essien Udim and Ikot Ekpene, have been approved by INEC with the resident electoral commissioner, Mr Mike Igini, signing them.
Meanwhile the PDP in the state has described Akpabio and the APC failures in the Saturday election as “uncommon defeat.”
The PDP in a statement signed by its publicity secretary, Mr Ini Ememobong, said: “With the declared results by INEC of the court-ordered rerun elections in Essien Udim Local Government Area for the Senate, House of Representatives and House of Assembly seats, the people of Essien Udim have brought a glorious end to an inglorious, disdainful and disgraceful comedy session staged under the leadership of the national comedian himself and actively supported by the pioneer and only speaker of the house of comedy.
“Yesterday, the people of Essien Udim massively rejected the trio of Senator Godswill Akpabio, Hon. Emmanuel Akpan and Hon. Nse Ntuen who were candidates for the Senate, House of Representatives and House of Assembly of the All Progressives Congress. The people happily expanded the margin of victory against the “Warsaw Commander” and his lieutenants, despite their spirited attempts to rig the elections.
“The people saw through the facade they made with the withdrawal statements and went out in their numbers to give them an uncommon final interment.
“The trio had announced to the world that they had withdrawn from the elections, but were actively planning on how to spring a surprise, by rigging the elections in favour of their party, knowing that their withdrawal was not recognised by law and that if they win, they will be announced winners, returned elected and subsequently sworn in.” the PDP said.