A troubled Imo State Governor, Rochas Okorocha, yesterday pleaded with the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, to declare him the winner of the April 11 governorship election, which the commission declared as inconclusive.
INEC Returning Officer for Imo State, Prof Ibidapo Obe, had last Sunday declared the governorship election inconclusive, following the cancellation of polls in some electoral wards in 23 local government areas of the state.
Okorocha, who gave an insight into what transpired in the various polling stations, accused some INEC officials and the police of collaborating with the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, to commit monumental electoral fraud to the disadvantage of his All Progressives Congress, APC.
The governor commended the people of the state for their support before, during and after the elections and enjoined them to remain calm. The governor also assured them that their wish must ultimately prevail as they demonstrated at the polls.
He said: “Imo is our state to protect, irrespective of whatever political party that is in power and it is our collective responsibility to defend democracy which is government of the people, by the people and for the people.”
Okorocha advised the PDP in the state to emulate President Goodluck Jonathan who promptly accepted the result of the presidential election and conceded defeat to Gen. Muhammadu Buhari.
The governor recalled that he was elected in 2011 via a supplementary election and pointed out that he was used to such exercise and would win any time, any day.
He however appealed to INEC to declare him winner of the inconclusive poll or go ahead to conduct a re-run in the affected polling units in order to stop delaying the pronouncement of his victory.
According to him, the declaration of the governorship election in the state as inconclusive is untenable since he had met the constitutional requirements to be announced as winner of the contest.
Okorocha commiserated with individuals who suffered one form of humiliation or the other during the polls and promised that the state government would take steps to address their plight.
The governor decried the massive electoral malpractices recorded in Aboh Mbaise, Ezinihitte and Ahiazu councils as well as Isu and Njaba where he alleged that ballot boxes were violently snatched by agents believed to be working for the PDP.


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