The Independent National Electoral Commission on Wednesday declared the Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, winner of the governorship election in the state.
The Returning Officer for the election, Teddy Adias, who made the declaration at the head office of INEC in Port Harcourt, said, Wike, who was the Peoples Democratic Party candidate, polled 886,264 votes, while his African Alliance Congress counterpart, Biokpomabo Awara, garnered 173,859 votes.
Awara was supported by the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, as the All Progressives Congress did not field any candidate during the election.
Declaring Wike winner, Adias said the governor satisfied the requirements of the law.
Adias said that 249,324 votes did not count in areas where election did not hold or was cancelled due to disruptions.
He said, “I, this day, confirm again, that I am the collation officer for the election and that Nyesom Wike of the PDP, having satisfied the requirements of the law, has scored the highest number of votes and is hereby declared winner and returned elected.
“The winner, with the highest votes, scored 886,264 and the second scored 173,859. The margin of lead with these votes stands at 712,405. A total number of registered voters in area where the election did not hold or cancelled stands at 249,324.”
Speaking shortly after he was declared winner, Wike dedicated his victory to God and to those who lost their lives during the 2019 elections in Rivers State.
The governor won in 19 local government areas out of the 21 that were declared while Awara won in two LGAs; Akuku-Toru (his LGA) and Oyigbo LGA.
Wike showed an overwhelming strength in his Obio/Akpor Local Government Area, where he polled 281,161 votes, while Awara scored only 7,495 votes.
Votes were not collated for Abua/Odual and Gokana Local Government Areas due to reported security issues.
The incumbent governor also scored high votes in Andoni Local Government Area where the National Chairman of the PDP, Uche Secondus, hails from.
Surprisingly, Wike also won in Ikwerre LGA, the council area of Amaechi.
Earlier, the collation officer for Abua/Odual Local Government Area, Friday Nwafor, said that the election in the area could not hold as a result of security reasons.
He added that stakeholders met and agreed that the election would not hold in the area for security reasons.
He said, “I arrived at the LGA and saw the registration area centre rowdy, youths with weapons gathered and took over the place. Stakeholders held a meeting with the people and agreed that election cannot hold for security reasons. Materials could not leave the RAC there.”
Wike explained that he was overwhelmed by the show of love by the people of the state, even as he expressed regret that some died during the polls.
He said, “We give glory to God; we thank Rivers people for showing love to us. Some of them lost their lives during the election. I never knew Rivers people can come together and say they would stand with us.We thank some Rivers people who are not here today; we dedicate this victory to them.”
He said, “By your peaceful conduct in the face of provocation, you have demonstrated truly that democracy is in your DNA and this we will continue to exhibit until all non-democrats pretending to be one are flushed out of our polity.
“The ruling All Progressives Congress should hide its head in shame that after four years in the office it had to use the combined team of gullible members of staff of INEC and military operatives to hang on to power after stealing the people’s mandate.”
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