- The All Progressives Congress (APC) has challenged the Independent
inconclusive elections in six states, saying such illegalities must stop.
A statement signed by the Party’s spokesman, Mr. Lanre Issa-Onilu, alleged
that in Rivers state particularly, INEC is working with Governor Nyesom
Wike to rig the elections.
The statement reads:
After the March 9 governorship elections across the country, the polls in
six states – Adamawa, Bauchi, Benue, Kano, Plateau and Sokoto – were
declared inconclusive by the Independent National Electoral Commission
(INEC). The electoral process was also suspended in Rivers state in a very
Post election, Nigerians will recall that the All Progressives Congress
(APC) had severally raised alarm over the plot by the opposition Peoples
Democratic Party (PDP) to use violence, vote-buying and other election
malpractices to subvert the will of the electorate and steal their
The shocking events leading to the last-minute postponement of the
presidential election provided clear evidence with PDP agents caught in
different parts of the country with programmed card readers, sensitive
election materials and large cache of weapons and security paraphernalia.
Undeterred, the PDP executed its rigging plot through its agents across
the country by unleashing violence, vote-buying and hijacking election
materials to rig and falsify elections results. The result was violent
disruption in many polling areas and over-voting which led to many
cancelled votes and ultimately the supplementary elections and suspended
exercise in some states.
INEC declared the governorship election in Benue State inconclusive,
citing an insufficient margin in votes obtained by the APC candidate Barr.
Emmanuel Jime and the PDP candidate, Governor Samuel Ortom.
Even though the PDP claims a bogus lead of over 81,000 votes, reports
strongly establish that this dodgy figure is an aggregate of ‘votes’
obtained by subterfuge not from the numbers recorded by the card reader.
There were cases in Logo, Gwer-West, Vandeikya, Guma, Buruku and Gboko
Local governments where the card reader was not used.
In Guma, a local government predominated by the APC, zero votes were
allocated to our candidate by thugs loyal to the governor of the State, as
agents of the party were chased away and election material diverted and
ballot papers thumb-printed for the governorship candidate of the PDP.
In Logo, security reports indicated that the ballot papers were massively
thumb-printed the night before the election day, while a brazen case of
under-age voting supervised by state government compromised security
personnel, was prevalent on the actual day of voting.
INEC also reported that 41 polling units in Vandeikya did not use the card
reader, as it was the case in many in Gwer-West, Gwer-East, Gboko and
A coalition of election observers in Benue has since called on INEC to
declare the candidate of the APC, Barr. Emmanuel Jime, the winner of the
governorship polls, in line with the Electoral Act and we align with the
position of these observers.
There is no doubt that our candidate obtained the highest number of
legitimate votes obtained with the usage of the card reader.
We are concerned and deeply troubled by the unfolding events in Rivers
State. The APC strongly condemns this horrid dance in Rivers State. This
unholy alliance between Governor Nyesom Wike, PDP and INEC is to prevent
Rivers people from electing a candidate of their choice by imposing Wike,
the PDP candidate on them. It was glaring that Wike was losing until INEC
stepped in to halt the process apparently to save Wike from impending
defeat. INEC must put a halt to this madness and brazen illegality.
The desperation of the PDP governorship candidate, Governor Nyesom Wike to
remain in office even if it means destroying the State and killing its
people, is throwing the State into turmoil and crisis.
With regard to the governorship election in Rivers State, APC has observed
with dismay the macabre dance between Wike and INEC in Rivers State. It is
on record that Wike through the Rivers State Resident Electoral
Commissioner (REC), Obo Effanga engaged PDP card-carrying members as Local
Government Area (LGA) Collation Officers to skew the elections in favour
of Wike and the PDP.
We call on the INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu to immediately redeploy
Mr. Effanga from Rivers State in order to avoid crisis that may follow the
organised crime being executed by Wike and Obo Effanga to rig and alter
the result of the 2019 governorship polls in Rivers State in favour of
Since the suspension of the electoral process in Rivers State, Governor
Nyesom Wike and the State REC Obo Effanga have been re-writing and
doctoring unit results in Rivers State Government House to favour Wike.
We are dismayed that some sponsored stakeholders including those who
witnessed the killing of over 40 persons on the 2015 governorship election
day alone due to someone’s quest to become governor by all means, appear
to be hoodwinked by the very same character to believe that security
agents especially the Army should have stayed away to allow a repetition
of what happened in 2015.
As a party that was solely at the receiving end of the killings in Rivers
State, the APC believes that the proactive steps taken by security agents
to checkmate a repeat of the 2015 killings and destructions, is
commendable and should be applauded by all peace-loving people.
We call on Nigerians and the international community not to be hoodwinked
into believing that Nigerian security agencies interfered in the electoral
process in Rivers State. It is a misleading narrative being planted in the
media to particularly blackmail the military and the federal government
into pulling out security agents from the state, thereby returning the
State to the killing field many of us witnessed before, during and after
the 2015 elections.
It is now clear to all that INEC has become deaf and blind to the fact
that Governor Nyesom Wike invaded the Obio/Akpor Collation Centre with
over 200 armed thugs and ordered his security men to shoot an Army Captain
and another soldier providing perimeter security to the Collation Centre.
Wike’s thugs carted away the electoral materials including both original
copies of unit result sheets and ward collation sheets that were being
used for the collation of results and took them to the Rivers State
Government House where they were filled out with rigged and inflated
We report that in most of the LGAs in the State, voting had concluded,
results declared at the polling units and collation had begun before the
abrupt suspension of the process. INEC does not have the power under our
Electoral Act to suspend elections that has already been concluded. We
suspect that INEC might be working to surreptitiously bring in cooked up
results credited to Obio/Akpor LGA to skew the election in favour of Wike.
We vehemently reject this anti-democratic move.
In Plateau state, our comfortable lead is unassailable. We however urge
our members, supporters and indeed the entire Plateau electorate not to be
complacent, but remain focused as we prepare for the supplementary
election that will give our performing candidate, Governor Simon Lalong a
second term in office to consolidate on his first-term achievement.
The opposition PDP camp in its self-deceit has continued to delude itself
on its nonexistent electoral chance in Nasarawa local government area. The
Kano electorate are not deceived.
Considering what happened in the inconclusive election widely
characterized by PDP vote buying and voter intimidation, relevant agencies
must ensure that such antidemocratic practice is not repeated.
It is on record how the Kano State Police Commissioner actively assisted
the opposition PDP to rig inside Kano city with the deployment of police
security for Rabiu Kwankwaso loyalists while state commissioner’s
orderlies were withdrawn.
Kano remains an APC state. With the massive votes garnered by our
presidential candidate, Muhammadu Buhari; the entire incoming 9th National
Assembly positions – 3 Senators and 24 House of Representatives – won by
the APC in Kano State; 27 State House of Assembly seats won by the APC out
of 39 and governorship election victories in all local governments outside
Kano metropolitan, there is no doubt that Kano State is a stronghold and
key support base of the APC.
The APC’s visible achievements in Kano state under Governor Abdullahi
Ganduje are enough to give the party an emphatic victory in the rerun
election. Again, the rerun will be mostly in APC-controlled rural areas
and Nasarawa local government area where our Deputy Governor, Nasiru Yusuf
Gawuna is from. Undoubtedly, Kano state remains an APC stronghold and
remains in our firm control.
We reject INEC’s decision on the governorship election results from Tafawa
Balewa local government area in Bauchi State, as signed and announced by
the electoral body’s National Commissioner and chairman of its Information
and Voter Education Committee, Festus Okoye.
While the close relationship between Festus Okoye who chaired the
fact-finding committee and Yakubu Dogara of the PDP is well known, hence
inappropriate for the fact-finding exercise for Bauchi state, INEC has
failed to adhere to the fundamental principle of fair-hearing by not
inviting our agents during the hearing to ascertain the circumstances
leading to the cancellation of the Tafawa Balewa local government election
INEC’s decision is illegal as the electoral body and contravenes the
provisions of the Electoral Act 2010 as amended
We reiterate that according to Nigeria’s 1999 Constitution (as amended)
and INEC Guidelines for 2019 General Elections, the electoral body is not
empowered to reverse any decision taken at the Collation Centre by the
Returning Officer appointed for that purpose.
Such decisions can only be reversed by a court of law, especially when
INEC cannot approbate and reprobate.
As displayed in the results of the presidential election, Sokoto is a
strong APC state. This rubbishes the suspicious and apparently stolen
results ascribed to the PDP governorship candidate.
It is on record how the PDP candidate and state governor, Aminu Tambuwal
used thugs and fake security agents to scare voters in the state. This
gave PDP agents a free and field day to rig and manipulate the
We are also aware how the huge monies were used to buy votes and how
complicit INEC officials disenfranchised APC members by purporting that
card readers machines stopped working in APC strongholds..
The forthcoming supplementary election in Sokoto state gives the APC; our
governorship candidate, Aliyu Ahmed and indeed the Sokoto electorate and
an opportunity claim our mandate.
Sokoto state is ready for the Next Level, we must not allow unpopular
elements in the state and their backers in the discredited PDP to steal
their mandate and subvert the will of the Sokoto electorate.
In Adamawa, the party had reported over-voting and use of security
personnel to intimidate APC agents and supporters. While we are confident
of our party and candidate Governor Jibrilla Bindow’s victory ahead of the
supplementary election in the state, we urge all stakeholders to avoid
actions that can plunge the state into crisis.
We equally urge INEC and relevant security agencies to ensure the
supplementary election is free, peaceful and fair compared to the last
inconclusive governorship election in the state which was characterised by
many irregularities and voter intimidation. No political ambition is worth
the life of any voters.
In conclusion, as a party, the APC is very confident of victory in the
forthcoming supplementary elections. Our commitment to free and fair
elections in the county remains resolute. We urge INEC to ensure that all
loopholes that led to rigging, vote buying and intimidation of voters by
the PDP is blocked.
Mallam Lanre Issa-Onilu
National Publicity Secretary
All Progressives Congress (APC)