Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, yesterday in Uyo, Akwa Ibom state capital issued Certificates of Return to elected members of Akwa Ibom House of Assembly, 25 days after the conduct of the election.
No reason was given for the delay which is however in contravention of section 75 (1) of the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended) which empowers INEC to issue a certificate of return after an election within seven days to every candidate who wins election.
The list of elected candidates for the state House of Assembly made available to newsmen by the state Resident Electoral Commissioner, Barr Austin Okojie, revealed that the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP won in 25 out of the 26 constituencies in the state while the All Progressives Congress, APC only won in Urue Offong/Oruko.
The list also revealed that only one female candidate , Princess Felicia Bassey of Okobo State Constituency, made it to the assembly, unlike the 5th Assembly which had three females, namely Alice Ekpenyong, Mbo; Ekaette Okon, Itu; and Sarah Elija, Nsit Atai.
A legal practitioner, Barr Udo George has said that the delay in the presentation of the certificates showed that the results of the election were manufactured.
“This shows that the results were manufactured, hence they had to take time to compute the results in their favour,” he said.
Okojie, however, thanked residents of the state for deepening democratic values in the electoral process as many losers conceded defeat honourably and congratulated the winners.
He said that the development which might appear strange in the political history of the country was an innovation that needed to be encouraged as it showed that democratic values had come to stay in Nigeria.

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