From Chijioke Agwu, Abakaliki
Ebonyi State chapter of the opposition People’s Democratic party (PDP) has claimed that its candidate in the Saturday 18th March Governorship election in the state, Ifeanyi Odii, was the actual winner of the election.
Acting Chairman of the party, Ifeanyi Nworie, flanked by other leaders of the party in the state made the claim at a press conference in Abakaliki on Thursday.
Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) had after the conclusion of the election declared the candidate of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Francis Nwifuru winner of the election after he polled 199,131 to defeat the PDP candidate, Odii, who polled 80,191 votes.
But the PDP leaders in the state alleged that the ruling party connived with the electoral body to rig the election in favour of the APC.
They also alleged that it’s members and supporters were harassed and intimidated during the elections.
“Arising from these monumental irregularities, we state that the declaration of any other candidate instead of Dr. Ifeanyi Chukwuma Odii is of no effect whatsoever. The results in our possession indicate otherwise.
“We make it clear that we are absolutely determined to prove that, based on the valid votes cast at the Governorship election of 18th March 2023, the Dr Odii scored the highest number of votes cast at the election and not less than one-quarter of the votes cast at the election in each of at least two-thirds of all the local governments in the state. As such, he ought to be declared and returned as the winner of the Governorship election.
“Unfortunately, for a morsel of bread, the INEC in its amoral, incongruous and impropriet performance has demonstrated that it lacks the trust and confidence of the people by the declaration it has made. It has consequently inflicted on Ebonyi people a woeful exercise with regressive calamity worse than currently being experienced. This aberrant situation has undermined the desire of the people of Ebonyi State to break free from the developmental constriction that has manifested for almost eight years”