Rivers re-run: The people are with PDP — Wike .
*** PDP wins 8 state constituencies, one House seat, APC victorious in one constituency
The governor of River State, Nyesom Wike has said it would be difficult to rig the re-run elections in the state because the people are on his side.
Speaking at a press conference in Port Harcourt, Wike said the election has shown clearly who is on ground and who is accepted by the people, saying INEC, federal might, military, police and other security agencies cannot translate to electoral victories because the people will “always resist agents of rigging”.
Wike also accused the military of working against public interest, saying rather than tackling security challenges they were busy “intimidating and harassing Rivers people”.
“Remember I warned that today’s Nigeria is not yesterday’s Nigeria. Things that were done wrongly before cannot be done wrongly now. I warned that the people will resist any attempt to rig,” he said.
“Now they have the federal might, army, Police, INEC and DSS, but we have the people.”
Meanwhile the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has released the results of nine state constituencies and one federal constituency in which rerun elections were held in Rivers State but the commission was compelled to suspend the electoral process in all other constituencies in the state where results were not announced due to the widespread violence that marred the elections.
However, based on the results released yesterday, the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) consolidated its control of the state by emerging victorious in eight of the nine state constituencies and one federal constituency seat, while the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) won one state constituency seat.
But as results were announced, Governor Nyesom Wike and the Minister of Transportation, Chibuike Amaechi, squared off against each other at the Mile 1 Diobu police station over a collation officer, Mrs. Ekwi Adebisa, who was purportedly abducted Saturday night by the former governor in company of soldiers.
Confirming the outcome of the rerun polls, the Director of Voter Education Publicity of INEC, Mr. Oluwole Osaze-Uzzi, disclosed that that the results were released in nine state constituencies and one federal constituency in the state.
He said PDP won in eight of the state constituencies, while APC won one seat. PDP, he said, also won one federal constituency but did not give the names of the state or federal constituencies in which results were declared.
Osaze-Uzzi also revealed that the release of further results were suspended due to reports of violence, attacks and even the deaths of INEC officials and ad hoc personnel in the state.
He said all INEC personnel were relocated to Abuja yesterday due to the escalation of violence in Rivers State.
Also in a statement yesterday, he said INEC conducted the polls in Rivers State pursuant to the orders of the Court of Appeal, but “rather unfortunately, some of these elections witnessed the disruption of the process, including the barricading of some of the INEC local government offices and Registration Area Centres (RACs) used for the distribution of electoral materials which led to the late commencement of the exercise in some places and consequently, its smooth take off.
“Of more serious concern was the level of threats, violence and intimidation of election officials and voters by well-armed thugs and miscreants allegedly acting on behalf of some politicians, which marred the elections in some areas!
“There were reports of numerous attacks resulting in fatalities, kidnappings, ballot snatching, diversion of officials and materials, amongst others, which necessitated its suspension in 8 local government areas.
“Regrettably, such deviant behaviour has continued today (Sunday). Several permanent and ad hoc staff engaged by the commission have been attacked, again resulting in fatalities, while some have been forcibly abducted and taken to unknown destinations.
“Under such difficult circumstances, the Returning Officers were only able to collate and declare results in one federal and nine state constituencies where the disruption and malpractices were not so widespread.
“Having reviewed the situation, the commission is compelled to suspend all further action concerning the exercise in all the other constituencies in the state pending the receipt of a comprehensive report from its field officials and monitors.
“For the avoidance of doubt, it should be noted that the suspension does not affect the constituencies where the exercise has been completed and the results declared by the Returning Officers,” he said.
Uunconfirmed results from the various collation centres for 11 state constituencies showed that PDP won 10 constituencies, namely: Akukutoru I (Major Jack), Omuma (Kelechi Wogu), Degema (Farah Dagogo), Ahoada East II (Edison Ehie), Ahoada East I (Martins Manna), Emohua (Sam Ogeh), Akukutoru II (Tonye Alalibo), Obio/Akpor I (Martin Amaewhule), Obio/Akpor II (Michael Chindah), Ogba/Egbema/Ndoni (Christopher Ahiakwor).
The candidate of the APC won in the Opobo/Nkoro state constituency, while Betty Apiafi of the PDP won the Abua Odua/Ahoada East Constituency to the Federal House of Representatives.
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