The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) Sunday announced the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate, Mr. Tokunbo Abiru, as the Senator-elect for Lagos East Senatorial District in Saturday’s bye-election.
The commission similarly declared the party’s candidate for Kosofe State Constituency II, Mr. Obafemi Saheed, as winner of the exercise.
Abiru defeated his opponent by wide margin in all the five local government areas in the senatorial district, polling a total of 89,204 votes against his Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) rival, Babatunde Gbadamosi, who secured 11,257 votes.
Saheed polled 12,494 votes to beat his rival, Mr. Sikiru Alebiosu of PDP who got 2,068 votes in Kosofe II Constituency.
Congratulating the two lawmakers-elect on their victory, Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu said the victories were a sound testament to the people’s confidence in the APC.
In a statement issued on Sunday by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Gboyega Akosile, the governor the electorate for coming out to perform their civic responsibilities and for voting in large numbers for the two candidates put forward by the APC.
He also appreciated chieftains of the party and members for working assiduously for the victory during the polls.
He said: “I want to congratulate Mr. Tokunbo Abiru and Obafemi Saheed on their victory in last Saturday’s by-elections in Lagos East Senatorial district and Kosofe State Constituency II polls. Your emergence as federal and state lawmakers is a validation of peoples’ confidence in our dear party, the APC.”
The governor advised the two newly elected lawmakers to continue with the tradition of excellent representation that Lagos legislators were known for.
Similarly, Speaker Lagos state House of Assembly Mudashiru Obasa, said the feat clearly demonstrated that the party had many more victories ahead.
Obasa said the victory had proven that the party in Lagos remains strong, united and has members and chieftains who continuously key into its goals and manifesto.
He commended the APC National Leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, members of the Governor’s Advisory Council (GAC) and chieftains of the party for making the right choices at all times.
Party wins Plateau, Imo, Bauchi too
Also in Plateau state, the INEC declared Nora Daduut of the APC as winner of the Plateau South senatorial bye-election held Saturday.
The exercise was conducted to fill the vacuum created by the death of Ignatius Longjan which occurred February 9.
INEC’s Returning Officer Idris Amali announced that Mrs. Daduut polled 83,151 votes to defeat her closest challenger, George Daika of the PDP who polled 70,838 votes; a margin of 12,313 votes.
“Daduut, having scored the highest number of votes cast and fulfilled the requirements of the law is hereby returned elected,” Amali said.
He said the total number of accredited voters for the election was 159,191, while votes cast were 157, 803.
The returning officer put the number of valid votes at 155,659 while 2,144 votes were rejected.
It was also victory song for the APC in Imo state as the party polled 31, 903 votes in the Okigwe senatorial bye-election.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), however, reports that the commission did not return a candidate from the party.
Announcing the result, the returning officer, Mr. Hakeem Adikum, said the APC won in five of the six local government areas (LGAs) in the senatorial district while the PDP came second having won only in Obowo LGA.
He declared that the LGAs won by the APC are Okigwe, Onuimo, Isiala Mbano, Ehime Mbano, and Ihitte Uboma.
“I hereby return the All Progressive Congress as the winner of the by-election held in Imo North on Saturday, Dec. 5,” he said.
Speaking, INEC Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) in Imo, Francis Ezeonu, said that the commission was unable to return a candidate from the APC as winner.
Ezeonu, a professor, explained that this was as a result of what he described as “several court orders” for and against the two major contenders, Frank Ibezim and Ifeanyi Araraume, a former senator.
He said two court judgments had surfaced Friday, one from the Court of Appeal, Owerri, and another from the Federal High Court, Abuja.
It will be recalled that the Court of Appeal faulted the judgment of the Federal High Court, Owerri, which had nullified the candidacy of Mr. Ibezim and declared him candidate while sacking Araraume barely 24 hours to the election.
The Federal High Court, Abuja had on the other hand declared Araraume as candidate of the party, on the grounds that Mr. Ibezim presented fake certificates to the APC and INEC. (NAN)
In Bauchi, the APC candidate for the state House of Assembly representing Dass local government, Bala Lukshi emerged victorious in the exercise.
Announcing the results of the election, the returning officer, Professor Ahmed Mohammed explained that the APC candidate polled 12, 299 votes to defeat his closest contender Bala Wandi of the PDP who scored 11, 062 votes.
The bye-election was conducted following the assassination of the former member of the assembly by yet-to-be identified gunmen.
The late lawmaker Mante Baraza was a member of the APC.
Some of the key actors during the keenly contested bye-election included the state governor Bala Mohammed and former Speaker House of Representatives Yakubu Dogara who campaigned vigorously and spiritedly for the PDP and APC candidates respectively.
Our correspondent reports that the election was peaceful as over 600 police men were deployed to the local government in addition to soldiers, civil defense, DSS officers, EFCC officials to maintain law and order during the election and prevent vote buying.
PDP sweeps C/River
In a related development, INEC declared Dr Stephen Odey of the PDP winner of the Cross River North senatorial bye-election held Saturday across the five local government areas of the zone.
Declaring the result, Prof Ameh Okoh of the Alex Ekwueme Federal University of Technology, Ikwo, Ebonyi state, who was the senatorial by-election Collation Officer, said Odey polled 129, 207 to defeat his closest rival, Barr Joe Agi of the APC who scored 19, 165 votes.
Mr. Gregory Agam of the African Democratic Congress, ADC, scored 388 while six other contestants from other political parties scored far less.
Announcing the result, Prof Okoh said: “The PDP candidate, having scored the highest number of votes cast is hereby declared the winner in line with electoral guidelines.”
Similarly, the PDP candidate, Mrs. Maria Akwaji also defeated Mr. Abor Adaji of the APC with 32, 166 votes to Adaji’s 3,546 to clinch Obudu State Constituency seat.
She is replacing her husband who died some months ago.
The Collation Officer, Prof Abel Ezeoha of Alex Ekwueme Federal University of Technology, Ikwo, Ebonyi state, made the announcement.
Speaking on the outcome of the elections, Governor Ben Ayade said he was impressed with the conduct of the polls, saying the turnout was also very encouraging. He called on the losers of the election to show sportsmanship in the interest of peace.
“We should put our differences aside and move on. We are all from the larger Ogoja senatorial district. Both the winner and loser must have an open mind and find a way to collaborate and work together. The world is a dynamic place. If you win today, tomorrow you may lose,” Ayade stated.
Also speaking, Senior Special Adviser to the Governor on Technical Matters, Arch Eric Akpo, commended INEC for the peaceful conduct of the polls, but appealed to Cross Riverians from all political divides to join hand with the governor to move the state forward.
However, the Zamfara State Assembly bye-elections for the state assembly was Sunday declared inconclusive.
The postponement followed the missing of two polling units’ results in Yargeda Ward, and two ad-hoc staff and over voting in 8 polling units in Bakura town.
Announcing results of the ten wards, Prof. Magawata said the APC polled 16,464 while the PDP polled 18,645 votes.
“The elections have been declared inconclusive following the political violence in Yargeda which caused missing of two INEC Adhoc staff and over voting in 8 polling units in Bakura town respectively, hence the need for the cancellation of the election in the affected areas by INEC,” he said.