© 2018 - International Centre for Investigative Reporting
Buhari Wins Presidential Election
In a major upset, the candidate of the opposition All Progressive Congress, APC, Muhammadu Buhari, has won the presidential election conducted last Saturday, polling a total of 15, 424,928 votes to beat President Goodluck Jonathan, the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, who got 12,853,162 votes.
The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, by Tuesday evening had officially announced the results of the presidential election in 35 states and the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, remaining only the results from Borno State.
However, the election collation officer in Borno State, Yaganami Karta, a Professor at the Dept of Language and Linguistic, University of Maiduguri, had earlier announced Buhari as the winner of the election in the state with 473,543 against Jonathan’s 25,640 votes.
Buhari won majority of the votes in 21 states but also secured up to 25 per cent of the votes in Plateau, Nasarawa, Ekiti, Taraba and Edo state, meaning that he has fulfilled the constitutional requirement of scoring 25 per cent of the votes cast in two thirds of the 36 states and the FCT.
Buhari, who got more than three million more votes that Jonathan in the election recorded upsets in traditional PDP states like Kogi, Kwara, jigawa, Niger and Benue, Kebbi, Katsina and Gombe winning outright majority in all those states.
Significantly, Buhari won in all the states in the North except Nasarawa, Plateau and Taraba states. But even in the states in the region that he did not win, he still scored the required 25 per for election in the states.
Buhari also took all the states in the South west, except Ekiti where the PDP won.
President Jonathan performed well in all South east and South south states, surprisingly taking Imo and Edo state which both have sitting APC governors.
The release of the results by INEC in Abuja Tuesday was attended by some drama as former minister of Niger Delta affairs, Godsday Orubebe, disrupted the exercise, protesting alleged bias and partiality on the part of Jega.
Orubebe, who acted as one of the PDP agents, alleged that the INEC chairman had rejected the submission of petitions by the PDP although he has received and acted upon complaints from the APC.
He also accused Jega of leaking unannounced results to the APC, which the party then published on social media.
The INEC chairman, however, dismissed both allegations, explaining that the PDP had not submitted any petition to the electoral body. He also stated that he had not provided any results to any political party as alleged by Orubebe.
The PDP has also rejected the results of the presidential election Lagos State, saying that it would challenge the poll’s outcome in court.
The agent of the PDP for the presidential election collation in Lagos State, Wahab Owokoniran, said that the exercise was attended by irregularities
“Most of the card readers were not functioning. And the manual (accreditation) that was done much later has really disenfranchised a lot of people,” Owokoniran said.
Buhari’s emergence as victor in this election is significant in many ways. He won the election at the fourth trial, having failed three previous times.
He contested against former President Olusegun Obasanjo in 2003, late President Umaru Yar A’dua in 2007 and against Jonathan in 2011.
Buhari would be the first person to defeat a sitting president through an election and the second military ruler after Obasanjo to be elected president in a democratic setting.
It is the first time since the return of Nigeria to civilian rule in 1999 that the PDP would not be the power at the centre.
Although Buhari has not been officially declared as the winner of the presidential election, there is already celebration across the country at the news of his election.
Even the international media is agog with Buhari’s election