INEC declares Jonathan winner

NIGERIAN TRIBUNE Newspaper-Jacob Segun Olatunji and Leon Usigbe

THE Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on Monday night formally declared President Goodluck Jonathan

of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) winner of last Saturday’s presidential election having polled 22,495,180 votes in addition to winning at least 25 per cent of the vote cast in 31 states of the country. The constitution stipulates 25 per cent in at least two-thirds of the 36 states (24 states) of the federation.

According to results announced by the INEC, Professor Attahiru Jega who was also the Chief Returning Officer of the federation, the presidential candidate of the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC), General Muhammadu Buhari (retd) came second with 12,214,853. He also got at least 25 per cent votes in 16 states.

Mallam Nuhu Ribadu of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), according to Jega, came third with 2,079,151 votes and also met the 25 per cent spread requirement in four states of Ogun, Ekiti, Oyo and Osun.

Jega also announced that the presidential candidate of the All Nigeria People’s Party (ANPP) and incumbent governor of Kano State, Mallam Ibrahim Shekarau, polled 917,012 votes, but failed to win the 25 per cent of the vote in any state.

Having announced the results, the INEC chairman, based on the powers conferred on him by both the constitution and the Electoral Act, declared President Jonathan of the PDP winner of the presidential election, having satisfied the legal requirements.

Only the agent of the PDP signed the result sheet as the agents of the other three major parties refused to sign. Legally, the refusal of a party agent to sign the sheet does not invalidate the result of an election in Nigeria.

Reacting to the result, the PDP said it dedicated the victory to Nigerians and promised that Jonathan would not let them down.

National organising secretary of the party, Uche Secondus, who was also the party’s agent at the INEC collation centre, said the party the administration of Jonathan would take Nigeria to the promised land.

In the same vein, the Director of Youth Affairs of the Presidential Campaign Committee of the party, Honourable Dare Adeleke said Nigerian youths were delighted at the victory and appealed to opponents of Jonathan to put their defeat behind them and join hands with the winner in making Nigeria a better place for all.

Meanwhile, there was a mild drama in Abuja, on Monday, as the national secretary of Congress for Progressive Change (CPC), Mr Buba Galadima, stormed the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) presidential collation centre, on Airport Road, Abuja, demanding for the immediate cancellation of the result of the presidential election in the South-South and South-East zones, saying that its presidential candidate, Major-General Muhammadu Buhari (retd), actually won the election.

Meanwhile, in his acceptance speech, President Jonathan described his re-election as a victory for the sustenance of democracy, just as he restated that he had no enemy to fight.

The president paid tribute to his political opponents, Major-General Buhari; Mallam Shekarau; Mallam Ribadu and others, and called on them to run the government together.

“The progress we seek for our country is in our hands. I am confident that with this new spirit of national re-awakening and our sense of collective ownership of the Nigerian project, a firm foundation has been laid for participatory governance and progress.

“Together, we will build a new economy that is strong and dynamic and underpinned by a patriotic work ethic. Together, we will make our society to emphasise the most noble of our national values and, together, we shall recreate a great nation wielded in unity and harmony; a nation marching towards collective progress in which no one is left behind,” he said.

Galadima, who was armed with a petition against the conduct of the election, was, however, prevented from gaining entrance into the collation centre, as he was not accredited and, as such, was refused entrance into the presidential collation centre.

The CPC scribe, who managed to deliver his party’s petition to one of the party agents for onward transmission to INEC chairman, Professor Attaihiru Jega, told newsmen that apart from the South-South and South-East zones, the party was also contesting the results from Sokoto, Adamawa, Nasarawa, Benue, Federal Capital Territory, Jigawa, among others.

According to him, “no election at all, I am speaking fact, in certain parts of the country. Results were written and announced. We are not accepting that. Nobody should announce the result of the South-South and the South-East, because there were no elections in those areas. All the results the INEC is announcing must be subjected to forensic analysis before they are announced. They are announced without forensic analysis, we will not accept it.

“From the actual result at the polling booths, Buhari is the winner of the presidential election. Our own collation is in progress; we will announce the result as soon as the collation is concluded,” he declared.

When asked whether CPC will be heading to electoral tribunal or court, Galadima said “we are not going to any court; the people will decide.”

It will be recalled that the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) had, on Sunday, raised the alarm over plots by the chieftains of the CPC to discredit the result of the presidential poll.


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