The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) Imo State has fixed Saturday 25th April 2015 for the re-run of the inconclusive governorship election in Imo and Taraba states
The new date for the election in the two states was announced by the commission in the respective states.
Imo State Resident Commissioner, Dr. Gabriel Ada, while announcing the new date at a press conference at the commission headquarters, Owerri, on Wednesday, said that elections would take place in the affected polling units in 23 local government areas of the state where elections were declared inconclusive.
Ada said the commission would conduct elections in over 250 polling units across the 23 LGAs in the State. He further disclosed that, INEC would also conduct fresh polls in four state constituencies where elections were marred by violence and irregularities.
The affected state constituencies where elections to be conducted include, Ikeduru, Isiala Mbano, Oguta, Isu and Owerri West. He therefore stated that the All Progressive Congress (APC) won 16 seats in the State House of Assembly while the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) clinched four seats on the results so far released. The Electoral body boss said that the commission would carry out fresh accreditation of voters as no manual voting would be allowed.
The commissioner said that the commission had started compiling of list of Electoral officers involved in electoral frauds in view of prosecuting those found guilty, adding that it would be unfair for the commission to declare the winner of the April 11, governorship polls without conducting elections in over 250 polling units.
The state Returning Officer, Professor Ebidayo Obe while declaring the governorship election in conclusive on Sunday announced that the APC governorship candidate Chief Rochas Okorocha pulled 385,671 while the PDP candidate Chief Emeka Ihedioha gathered 306,142 votes. The margin of win stood at 79520 votes while the votes expected form the affected polling units declared inconclusive were over 144,715.
Similarly, INEC has fixed Saturday, April 25 for the run-off election between Darius Ishaku of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Senator Aisha Jummai Alhassan of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
The Head of Department, Enlightenment and Publicity, Mr. Phebian Yame, who announced the date for the election during a briefing at the head office of the commission in Jalingo, said the date had been communicated to all the parties involved.
INEC had declared the gubernatorial election in the state inconclusive and ordered that based on the fact that cancelled votes in the election were more than the margin between the votes polled by Ishaku who came top in the election and Alhassan who was runner up.
The margin between Ishaku who polled 317,198 votes and Alhassan who polled 262,386 votes was 54,812, while the cancelled votes were 127,125.
In declaring the elections inconclusive, the returning officer, Prof. Kyari Mohammad, explained that the Constitution of Nigeria and the Electoral Act stipulate that when the difference between the total cancelled votes in an election is higher than the margin between the first and the second person, elections should be declared inconclusive and a run-off should be conducted.
The run-off election would be conducted in all the 165 polling units of Donga Local Government Area as well as some polling units in Bali, Karim Lamido, Takum, Ussa, Wukari, Yorro and Zing.