A former acting Governor of Kogi State, Chief Clarence Olafemi, has warned the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) not to create crisis in the state following its declaration that last Saturday’s governorship election was inconclusive.
Olafemi, who is a member of the All Progressives Congress Board of Trustees (BoT), said the INEC has not told the truth on how it arrived at its ‘inconclusive’ decision, despite what he termed the ‘clear victory’ secured by the APC and the fulfilment of 95 percent compliance with the provisions of the Electoral Act (as amended).
He insisted that it was strange for INEC to declare the election inconclusive when the number of persons adjudged not to have voted, if added to the figures secured by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate, Governor Idris Wada, cannot overturn his party’s victory.
According to him, the INEC chairman was misinformed by the 49,000 registered voters in the 91 polling units were elections were canceled, instead of the actual PVC collection of 25,000, which represents the number of eligible voters in those areas.
Said Olafemi: “The INEC position of having 49,000 inconclusive or cancelled election in about 91 units in 19 local government areas as basis for declaring the election inconclusive was at best done in error, because in all the 21 local governments mentioned and the units affected, the total number of collected permanent voters card is 25,000, which, assuming it is added to the number of votes polled by the PDP, still makes them a loser.
“And, this figure of 25,000 represents about five per cent of the total votes cast in the election, thereby leaving 95 per cent compliance with those already declared, and in the spirit of the Electoral Act (as amended), it is sufficient to declare a winner”.
The former acting governor, therefore, called on INEC to immediately declare the APC winner of the election, saying the sad incident of Prince Abubakar Audu’s demise must not be used as an excuse to deny it of its “hard earned victory”.
Olafemi said: “It is a settled matter at the Supreme Court in the case of Rotimi Amaechi that it is the party that contests election and not an individual and that is why the names and photographs of individual the candidates are not on the ballot papers.
“And, since the APC still has a candidate in that election as the deputy, the party must not be made to forfeit the benefit of its success at the poll. Rather, the living running mate who participated in the election should be made to inherit the success, while the party shops for the deputy for him”.