25 March 2019

Nigeria: Ganduje, Tambuwal, Lalong, Ortom Win Second Term

The governors of Kano, Sokoto, Plateau and Benue states, yesterday, won a second term in a fierce rerun elections. However, the governors of Bauchi and Adamawa will have to wait for court pronouncements to ascertain their fate.

Governor Abdullahi Ganduje of Kano State and his counterpart in Plateau, Simon Bako Lalong won their second term under the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC); while Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto and Benue's, Samuel Ortom who both defected to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), won their reelection on the platform of their new party.

All of them had participated in the March 9 gubernatorial elections held in 29 states. However, the results in Kano, Sokoto, Plateau, Benue, Bauchi and Adamawa were declared inconclusive while that of Rivers was suspended.

During the supplementary elections held on Saturday, winner could not be announced in Bauchi because Governor Mohammed Abubakar of the APC is in court challenging the outcome of elections in Tafawa Balewa Local Government Area which Sen. Bala Mohammed of the PDP is leading.

Kano

INEC yesterday declared Governor Abdullahi Ganduje winner of Kano State rerun election.

The results declared showed that Ganduje of the APC scored1,033,695, while PDP's candidate Engr. Abba Kabir Yusuf scored 1,024,713. There was a margin of 8,982 between the two contenders.

Kano state Governor, Dr Abdullahi Umar Ganduje won the rerun election with 45,876 votes.

Declaring the result of the supplementary election held on Saturday, the state Returning Officer, Professor B. Shehu, said Ganduje polled 45,876 votes while Engr. Yusuf scored 10,239 votes.

Prof Shehu said registered voters in the 28 local governments where the supplementary elections were held stood at131,073.

He, however, said out of the figure, only 57,777 voters were accredited for the rerun, adding that the total valid votes stood at 56,407, rejected votes 1,100.

But the PDP had rejected the results, saying Engr. Yusuf was the winner.

The PDP in a statement yesterday by its National Publicity Secretary, Mr. Kola Ologbondiyan said the whole world knew that their candidate won the election since March 9.

The party said Yusuf had fulfilled the constitutional requirement of securing the highest number of votes and the statutory 25 per cent in two-third of the state.

"The so-called governorship supplementary election in Kano is a national disgrace and a mere figure allocating exercise by compromised the INEC officials, who collaborated with power drunk politicians in the APC to award results to the APC candidate.

"The party therefore cautions INEC against any attempt to import contrived figures from the illegitimate March 23 charade as such will be a clear recipe for anarchy and crisis in the state.

"The people of Kano state have a long history of firm resistance against corrupt and oppressive forces. Their will must therefore not be stretched in this election," he said.

Sokoto

Of all the politicians that sought for high profile offices this year, Tambuwal won with the slimmest margin of 342. He was declared winner of the election in the state having obtained 512,002 votes while his closest rival, APC's Alhaji Ahmed Aliyu, got 511,660 votes.

Announcing the outcome of the inconclusive and supplementary governorship elections in the state, the Returning Officer, Professor Fatima Batul Muktar, said PDP got the highest number of votes and therefore returned as the winner.

Earlier, while giving the results of the supplementary governorship election, Professor Muktar said PDP had 22,444 while APC got 25,515.

But from the inconclusive election, APC had 486,145 votes while PDP led with 3,413 votes having secured 489,558 votes.

According to her, the total registered voters was 1,887,767 while 1,083,413 voters were accredited for the election. She said valid votes stood at 1,036,332 and rejected votes stood at 31,662.

But the APC agent and chairman of the APC governorship campaign council, Alhaji Muhammadu Maigari Dingyadi, objected the results from Kebbe local government area.

According to him, the card reader malfunctioned, so there was no election in some polling units in Kebbe.

"We strongly object the result from Kebbe and call on the electoral umpire to do the needful," he said.

Responding, Professor Mukhtar said the observation was noted.

The APC in the state also rejected the declaration of Governor Tambuwal as winner.

Briefing newsmen, the publicity secretary of the party, Sambo Bello Danchadi, said they rejected the results on grounds that the margin of 342 votes was far less than the registered voters in polling units where elections were not held which contravened the electoral law.

Danchadi said that they complained to INEC about outright rigging allegedly perpetrated by the PDP, but it went ahead to make the declaration.

They alleged that potential voters were denied the opportunity to cast their votes in some polling units in some local government areas.

Speaking on the development, the Coordinator of APC Presidential Campaign Council in the North West, Senator Aliyu Magatakarda Wamakko, urged members in Sokoto to remain peaceful, resolute and calm.

"We have jointly struggled, fought and won. We are never losers. All and sundry have done their possible best by coming out en masse and massively cast their invaluable votes for our candidates, at all levels," he said in a statement signed by his Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Bashir Rabe Mani.

Plateau

The fierce contest between incumbent Governor Simon Bako Lalong and Sen. Jeremiah Useni of the PDP finally came to an end in the early hours of Sunday.

INEC declared Lalong winner after scoring 595, 582 votes to defeat Sen. Useni who polled 546, 813 votes.

The declaration came after supplementary elections were conducted in 40 polling units of nine local government areas of the state. Results from the supplementary election showed Lalong polled 12, 327 votes against Useni's 8, 487 votes.

The APC had before the supplementary election polled 583, 255 votes against the PDP's 538,326. The election was declared inconclusive because the 44, 929 margin of lead was less than cancelled votes from nine local government areas which was put at 48, 828.

However, Returning Officer and the Vice Chancellor of University of Agriculture, Makurdi, Prof. Richard Anande Kimber on Sunday said; "Barrister Simon Bako Lalong of the APC, having satisfied the requirement of law and scored the highest number of votes is hereby declared the winner and is returned elected."

The results from 17 local government areas of Plateau State shows Lalong won with a margin of 48, 769 votes. The APC candidate defeated PDP's Useni in 11 local government area the while the PDP led in six. Lalong said yesterday that his re-election was a show of confidence, trust and a referendum on his administration's cherished principles of unity and peace.

Benue

Governor Samuel Ortom was also yesterday declared as winner of Saturday's rerun governorship election in Benue.

Making the declaration at the INEC office in Makurdi, the State Collation Officer for the governorship poll, Professor Sebastian Maimako, said Ortom of the PDP polled 434,473 votes to defeat the candidate of the APC, Emmanuel Jime who garnered 345155 votes.

Professor Maimako said a total of 846,222 valid votes were cast in the election while 15,268 votes were rejected.

In the March 9 governorship poll in the state, which was declared inconclusive, Ortom had scored 410,576 while his rival, Jime got 329,022 votes. Ortom was then leading with 81,554 votes.

The rerun election held in 204 polling units in 22 LGAs, was relatively peaceful, though it was characterized by pockets of violence, including the shooting of the Collation Officer for Gboko LGA.

Bauchi

The pending suit before a Federal High Court in Abuja has stalled the declaration of PDP candidate as winner of the Bauchi State governorship supplementary elections.

The court presided by Justice Inyang Ekwo will today rule on the application by INEC challenging its jurisdiction to make an earlier order stopping the collation of results in Tafawa Balewa Local Government Area of the state.

The APC and Governor Mohammed Abubakar had both approached the court to stop INEC from proceeding with the collation of results in the area after the umpire earlier declared the election inconclusive.

But while the Tafawa Balewa area was pending, supplementary election was conducted in the other 36 polling units across 15 local government areas in the state on March 23.

Speaking after the results collation, the Returning Officer, Professor Mohammed Kari disclosed that PDP candidate, Senator Bala Abdulkadir Mohammed got 6,376 while the APC candidate, Governor Mohammed Abdullahi Abubakar got 5,117.

He, however, did not declare and return the PDP candidate as the winner due to the suit in court instituted by the APC and its candidate.

The PDP candidate won in eight out of the 15 local governments where the supplementary elections were held while the APC won in seven. The local government areas won by the PDP include, Alkaleri, Bogoro, Dass, Itas/Gadau, Kirfi, Misau, Ningi and Toro.

The APC won in Darazo, Ganjuwa, Giade, Gamawa, Jama 'are, Shira and Katagum local government areas.

In the governorship election held on March 11, the PDP was leading with a margin of 4,059 votes including the withheld Tafawa Balewa local government area results. PDP had 469,512 while the APC had 465,453 votes.

At the last court hearing on Thursday March 21, counsel to INEC, Tanimu Inuwa (SAN) had argued that the court lacks the jurisdiction to dabble into a post-election matter by halting collation of results in Tafawa Balewa Local Government Area of Bauchi State.

He contended that having rescinded its earlier decision to declare the election inconclusive "based on facts that emerged later and made a return, any grievance arising therefrom now rest with the Election Petition Tribunal."

However, counsel to the APC and Governor Abubakar, Ahmed Raji (SAN) contended that his clients cannot go to the Election Petitions Tribunal without a result, adding that without a conclusive result and a declaration, the tribunal would also have no jurisdiction to entertain the matter leaving them without a remedy.

Adamawa

There was no supplementary primary election in Adamawa State because the Movement for the Restoration and Defence of Democracy (MRDD) and its candidate, Rev. Eric Theman had approached the court seeking outright cancellation of the gubernatorial election because their logo did not feature on the ballot.

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