INEC returns Nyesom Wike as Rivers State governor-elect
MORE than three weeks after the gubernatorial election was held in Rivers State, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has finally concluded the process and declared the incumbent Governor, Nyesom Wike the winner of the election.
Wike, the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), polled a total of 886,264 votes to defeat his closest challenger, Awara Biokpomabo of the African Action Congress (AAC) who scored a total of 173,859 votes.
Teddy Adias, the Returning Officer for the Rivers State guber election, announced that Wike, having satisfied the requirements of the law and having scored the highest number of valid votes is declared the winner and returned elected.
After the election which held on March 9, collation of election result was suspended due to an outbreak of violence at the various local government collation centres. Armed soldiers were reported to have stormed several collation centres and disrupted the process. Some people were also reported to have lost their lives in the violence.
When INEC decided to resume collation, the candidate of the AAC filed a case before the Federal High Court in Abuja, seeking that INEC should be restricted from recommencing collation. The suit was, however, struck out by Justice Inyang Ekwu who ruled that the federal high court lacks the jurisdiction to entertain a post-election matter.
The All Progressives Congress (APC) was not on the ballot for the Rivers election as infighting prevented the party from conducting a valid primary election within the period stipulated by INEC.
However, Rotimi Amaechi, the Minister of Transportation, who is a leader of the APC in the state, threw his weight behind Biokpomabo and urged all APC supporters to vote for him.