The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has, one after the other, been declaring winners for Nigeria’s March 18th Gubernatorial and House of Assembly elections.
The All Progressives Congress (APC) has, so far, been victorious in 14 states; The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), seven and the New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP), one state (Kano).
Among the victorious governors, eight have been re-elected for a second term: Inuwa Yahaya of Gombe (APC), Seyi Makinde of Oyo (PDP), Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos (APC), Dapo Abiodun of Ogun (APC), Bala Mohammed of Bauchi (PDP), AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq of Kwara (APC), Mai Mala Buni of Yobe (APC) and Babagana Umara Zulum of Borno (APC).
The freshly minted governors are: Umo Eno of Akwa-Ibom (PDP), Dikko Radda of Katsina (APC), Umar Bago of Niger (APC), Ahmed Aliyu of Sokoto (APC), Umar Namadi of Jigawa (APC), Uba Sani of Kaduna (APC) and Kefas Agbu of Taraba (PDP), Sheriff Oborevwori of Delta (PDP), Hyacinth Alia of Benue (APC), Bassey Otu of Cross River (APC), Francis Nwifuru of Ebonyi (APC), Sim Fubara of Rivers (PDP), Abba Yusuf of Kano (NNPP) and Caleb Mutfwang of Plateau (PDP).
Collation of governorship election results in some parts of Abia and Enugu states have been suspended, according to Festus Okoye, INEC’s National Commissioner in charge of Information and Voter Education Committee. It was because of thuggery.
In his words: “Arising from the meeting, the Commission took the decision to suspend forthwith further collation of the Governorship election results in some parts of Abia and Enugu States”, he stated, adding that this will allow for a thorough review of results from the affected areas.
Worse still, INEC declared elections as inconclusive in Adamawa and Kebbi states because of the margin of votes. While Governor Ahmadu Fintiri of Adamawa (PDP) has, according to reports, polled 421,524 votes, Aishatu Dahiru (APC), Binani for short, scored 390, 275 votes.
According to Muhammadu Mele of the University of Maiduguri, the INEC state collation and returning officer, elections were not held in 47 wards and these affected 69 polling units. That was why yesterday people started congratulating Binani that she might become Nigeria’s first female Governor.
“So, this gives us a margin of 31,249. The total number of PVCs collected in places where elections were not held amounted to 37,016,” Mele said.
The electoral law, as Mele explained, “provides that where the margin between two candidates is lesser than the total number of collected PVCs in areas where elections were not held, the election is to be declared inconclusive.”
However, overvoting was the reason the the election in Kebbi state was declared inconclusive. Yusuf Sa’idu of the Usman Danfodio University, Sokoto, who is the state’s collation and returning officer, said that the results got from some polling units exceeded the number of accredited voters.
“When we checked the results, the two leading political parties in this contest, APC and PDP, polled 388,258 and 342,980 votes respectively. When we look at the difference, it stands at 45,278,” Sa’idu said.