Following Abaribe’s victory in the Abia South election, Governor Ikpeazu criticizes INEC

Following Abaribe’s victory in the Abia South election, Governor Ikpeazu criticizes INEC

The announcement of Enyinnaya Abaribe as the victor of the Abia South senatorial election has been resisted by Governor Okezie Ikpeazu.

The incumbent legislator received 49,693 votes, according to results released on Tuesday by the Independent National Electoral Commission, or INEC.

Ikpeazu of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) received 28,422 votes, while Chinedu Onyeizu of the Labour Party (LP) received 43,903 votes.

Emeka Nnamani of the LP received 35,502 votes to win the Aba South and North federal constituency, according to Prof. Georgina Ugwuanyi, the returning officer.

The governor said on Wednesday that INEC erred in announcing the All Progressive Grand Alliance, or APGA, as the winner.

He questioned why a statement was released after the commission acknowledged that 108 polling places in Obingwa, Aba South, and Abia North did not hold elections.

Ikpeazu claimed that the impacted units had 200,000 cumulative voters, which was more than the votes of all parties, through the PDP collation agent Charles Esonu.

The Governor asserted that over 50,000 PDP supporters were prevented from casting a ballot because voting materials were either not provided or arrived after the deadline in the district’s local government units.

Esonu remembered that the first issue was not knowing when the results for 5 LGAs that the electoral umpire announced were deposited.

“We would have been able to scrutinize. There were several mutilations on the result from Aba South LGA, they also cancelled many units in Aba South.

“Prof. Georgina Ugwunyi, at the collation centre at Constitution Crescent primary school, Aba, declared the election inconclusive.

“This was due to a substantial number of polling units, totalling 108 which had issues requiring a rescheduled election.

“I told her she should not declare any winner because of the margin of lead between the first and second candidates.

“Abaribe was leading with 6,000 votes. The returning officer agreed with party agents that nobody should be declared a winner because of the margin of lead.

“We were shocked Prof. Ugwuanyi later returned to the collation centre in the afternoona and declared a winner, citing orders from above,”

said Esonu.

Ikpeazu, a member of the Governor Nyesom Wike-led G5, knew the race would never be simple because he had to take on Abaribe’s base of support as well as the LP wave brought on by Peter Obi’s popularity.

Abaribe January 2020, a tenacious politician, demanded President Muhammadu Buhari’s impeachment at a Senate discussion about the recent spike in insecurity in Nigeria.

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