The All Progressive Grand Alliance has urged the President-elect, Maj. Gen. Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), to probe what it described as election frauds in Abia State when he assumes office on May 29.
APGA National Chairman, Chief Victor Umeh, who made the call at a joint press conference with the party’s governorship candidate in Abia State, Dr. Alex Otti, on Sunday in Umuahia, rejected the result of the poll and vowed that the party would challenge it at the election petitions tribunal.
He alleged that “while other parts of the country are celebrating democracy, the Independent National Electoral Commission used the South-East for experiment.”
Umeh alleged that both the April 11 governorship poll and the April 25 rerun in Abia State were marred by irregularities.
He accused the INEC of colluding with the Peoples Democratic Party to rig the poll in favour of PDP’s candidate.
He expressed shock that INEC ignored APGA’s earlier call for the outright cancellation of the controversial results from three Local Government Areas on April 11 poll, but instead reinstated the cancelled results.
Umeh said, “The controversy that was generated by the Returning Officer in restating the election results he had cancelled in Obingwa, Osisioma and Isialangwa North, necessitated APGA’s earlier call for the cancellation of the ” out of the reality figures from the affected councils.”
Umeh insisted that INEC ought to have sustained the cancellation of the results from the three council areas as it did in Imo State in 2011, alleging that “even the rerun was held under incoherent preparations as up till Friday night, details of polling units, where election was to hold, remained speculative.”
He claimed that the election was won by APGA but manipulated in favour of PDP, vowing to head to the tribunal to seek redress.
“APGA rejects the result of the poll as announced not because we cannot lose election but can accept losing election through credible process. We won the election clearly but our mandate was stollen.
“Accordingly, we will not resort to self help; we will challenge the result at the tribunal “, he vowed.
He promised that “APGA will firmly stand by Otti until he reclaims his stolen mandate,” he added.
Umeh said Governor Willie Obiano of Anambra State has restated his commitment to ensuring that Otti gets justice.
Otti thanked Abians for “their massive support ” for him, and appealed to them to remain calm and prayerful as he heads for the tribunal.
He vowed to stop at nothing in reclaiming his ” stolen mandate”.
“Election has come and gone but the battle has just started. Evil cannot prevail over good but if it seems to prevail, it is only for a while.
“Weeping can only endure for a night, joy comes in the morning. We will not resort to brigandage because two wrongs cannot make a right, Otti added.
He alleged that voters were intimidated and scared from the polling units by coffins paraded in Aba on the eve of the election by suspected PDP sympathisers.
Otti said the rerun was fraudulently cancelled in Umunneochi council under questionable circumstances after it had been listed by INEC, and accused the electoral umpire of complicity.