by Lekan Olanrewaju
Former governor of Kebbi state, Saidu Dakingari was yesterday announced as the winner in the governorship re-run election held yesterday.
According to the Chief Returning Officer of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Professor Lawal Bilbis, Saidu Dakingari of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) polled 875,492 votes to defeat Mr. Abubakar Abubakar of the Congress of Progressive Change (CPC) who garnered 17,918 votes and the candidate of the Action Congress of Nigeria, Kabir Tanimu, who polled 4,656 votes. Suleiman Argungu of the All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) came fourth with 2,528 votes.
The election was boycotted by the ANPP whose candidate, Mr. Argungu, accused INEC of being biased before the election.
The Supreme Court had previously sacked the governor and ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission to hold a new election within 90 days.
President Goodluck Jonathan has also congratulated the governor, promising the support of the federal government. “The efforts of his incoming administration to continuously improve the living conditions of the people of Kebbi State will receive all possible support and assistance from the federal government” he said in a statement through his spokesperson Reuben Abati.
Meanwhile the opposition CPC has said it will not be contesting the elections, blaming the failure on disunity within the party.
“The CPC has no problem with the result and shall not contest it in any court,’’ said the party Secretary in Kebbi, Alhaji Bashir Matawalle,.“The controversy over CPC’s withdrawal from Saturday’s governorship re-run election should not be blamed on INEC, the CPC did not put its house in order.”
The candidate of the All Nigeria People’s Party (ANPP), on the other hand, maintained his earlier criticism.
“Going by the low turnout of voters, the general apathy to the exercise and the lopsided nature of the results, it is clear that the election did not meet expected standards’’ he said.