Olanrewaju, Ilorin, Olanrewaju Lawal, Birnin-Kebbi and Laide Raheem, Abeokuta
It was victory dance for the All Progressives Congress (APC), yesterday, in Kebbi, Kwara and Ogun states, yesterday, as the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) announced results of the governorship and House of Assembly elections.
Kebbi State, Governor Abubakar Atiku Bagudu, had his mandate renewed, as he defeated his archrival and candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Senator Isa Galaudu by 673,717 to 106,633 votes.
The Collation Officer, Prof. Aruma Yau Hamish Bichi, stated that the total registered voters were 1,789,975 while total accredited voters were 820,078.
He said the total valid votes stood at 793,388,rejected votes stood at 20,696 while total votes caste remained 814,084.
In Kwara, the party not only won the governorship seat with a wide margin, it also clinched all the 24 House of Assembly seats.
While making the declarations in Ilorin, the Resident Electoral Commissioner, Mallam Attahiru Garba Madami, said the APC won the elections with landslide victory across the 16 local government areas of the state.
The governor-elelct, AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq, has dedicated his victory to the people of the state.
“March 9, the people of Kwara State finally shook off the yoke of political subjugation and socio-economic stagnation by voting overwhelmingly for our party in the governorship and House of Assembly elections. We give Almighty God all the glory.
“We dedicate this victory to the people of Kwara State, home and abroad, who stood resolutely to see through the democratic revolution that started many years ago.
“Much as this historic event calls for celebrations, we instead implore our people to reflect on the challenges ahead and the need to come together. This victory belongs to all Kwarans.
“We are faced with the challenge of evolving a Kwara that works for all, away from the abysmal state of affairs now. We promise to diligently implement our manifesto for the good of our people.
“We salute all the heroes of this struggle, including all those who paid the supreme sacrifice. May their souls rest in perfect peace. We commend our party members, leaders at the local, state and national levels for their sterling efforts and contributions to this victory,” he said shortly after his declaration.
Candidate of the PDP, Razak Atunwa, congratulated him and also thanked God for His blessings as well PDP’s leadership and supporters.
“I would like to thank the PDP leadership and all our supporters who stood by me in the just concluded elections. Your commitment and dedication is heart-warming. You all gave your best. We are all winners in the process of democracy.
“Whilst the party considers its next line of action, and without prejudice to any legal process, I offer my congratulations to AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq,” Atunwa said in a statement.
In Ogun State, Dapo Abiodun clinched victory in spite of the stiff opposition from incumbent Governor Ibikunle Amosun.
But the Allied Peoples Movement (APM) and its gubernatorial candidate, Adekunle Akinlade, a protegee of Senator Amosun, have rejected results announced by INEC, which at press time, showed the APC in a comfortable lead.
Campaign Director General of the APM, Sarafa Tunji Ishola, who spoke alongside Akinlade at the party secretariat in Abeokuta, alleged that the election was manipulated.
Ishola claimed the election was allegedly hijacked by hoodlums and “unidentified unformed men” during collation and further manipulated the results.
He said the APM had petitioned INEC in the state to investigate the “infractions” and stop announcement of results forthwith.
Ishola said despite the complaints highlighted in the petition, the INEC went ahead to announce the results.
The APM governorship candidate, Akinlade, said the “people of Ogun State have been raped” and vowed to pursue all legal means to undo the alleged injustice.
UK expresses concern
The United Kingdom has expressed concern over reports of interference by the military in election process in Rivers State.
The UK made its concern known in a message on the Facebook page of the British High Commission, Abuja.
The reports, according to the UK, came particularly from its observers deployed to monitor the March 9, 2019, election.
The concern expressed by the UK came amidst violence witnessed across the country during the election where loss of lives were recorded.
The UK, however, said it was monitoring the situation in Rivers closely, adding that staff of INEC must be allowed to work safely without intimidation.
The UK said: “Extremely concerned by reports, including from @UKinnigeria observers, of military interference in the election process in Rivers State.”