I Won Kogi Guber Polls, Ex-Gov. Wada Tells Tribunal

Idris WadaImmediate past Governor of Kogi State, Capt. Idris Wada (retd.) on Wednesday told the State Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Abuja that he won the 2015 governorship election in the state.
The former governor contested the election on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
Mr. Wada spoke through one of his witnesses, Joe Agada, the PDP Chief Agent at the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, collation centre in Lokoja, while opening his defence.
The witness was led in evidence by Chris Uche (SAN), counsel to Mr. Wada.
According to Agada, Wada won the election with 204, 877 votes against 6,885 scored by Governor Yahaya Bello of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
He said Mr. Bello could not inherit votes scored by late Audu Abubakar, who was until his death, the governorship candidate of All Progressives Congress (APC) in the election.
Mr. Agada said late Audu scored 240, 867 on November 21 governorship election but died 7.45 a.m. on Nov. 22, 2015 before the election could be concluded.
He further stated that the APC had no valid candidate for the supplementary election because at the time Bello’s name was submitted to INEC as substitute candidate, the statutory time allowed for substitution had elapsed.
Mr. Wada scored 199, 514 on Nov. 2, 2015 election, while he polled 5,363 in the supplementary election on Dec. 5, 2015.
In the Nov. 21, late Audu scored 240, 867, while Mr. Bello, who substituted him received 6,885 vote in the Dec. 5 election and was subsequently declared winner.
But Mr. Agada argued that with the figure polled by Bello, he could not be said to have won the election.
The witness, under cross examination, also maintained that the vote cast for late Audu remained void after he died.
He further argued that Mr. Bello did not participate in the Nov. 21 governorship election as he had no permanent voter card.
According to him, none of the candidates won at the time the election was declared inconclusive by INEC.
Meanwhile, the tribunal admitted as exhibits, Mr. Agada’s statement on oath, result sheets from the 2,548 polling units in the state, voter register and PDP’s protest letter to INEC.
Other documents admitted by the tribunal were the witness’s party membership card, voter card and letter of his appointment as PDP chief agent at INEC coalition centre.
Another witness, Samuel Oduntan, testified that he carried out a forensic analysis of the election material and discovered that there was over voting.
He, however, said he could not remember the numbers of ballot papers he scanned, adding that he was the team leader of the forensic expert, who signed report presented to the court.
(NAN)

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