Here are some bits and pieces from the Saturday, March 28, 2015 elections…
THE CHALLENGES OF CARD READERS
The card readers recorded serious challenges in some parts of the country. Even President Goodluck Jonathan and his wife, Patience had issues with theirs.
So many presiding officers had problems with the card readers, which was allegedly as a result of the wrong programming of the machine.
The initial February 14 election date that was shifted was still in most of the card readers, instead of March 28. In some cases, the presiding officers failed to remove the seal on the cover of the readers while others found it difficult to recognize the finger prints of the voters until they had their hands washed. These were some of the reasons for the mass failure recorded with the card readers.
ALTERNATIVE TO CARD FAILURE
When complaints of ineffective card readers became incessant, INEC gave approval for its officers to accredit voters manually, after being sufficiently satisfied that the Permanent Voter Cards belonged to them.
In a statement by INEC’s Chairman, Information, Voter Education and Publicity Committee, Dr. Chris Eyimoga, that Saturday, the commission said this step was informed by the level of challenges encountered in accrediting prospective voters.
INEC WEBSITE HACKED, RESTORED
The Independent National Electoral Commission’s website, inecnigeria.org, witnessed a major attack on Saturday, March 29, 2015 as it was hacked by an unknown group. On the website, the group, which displayed an election cartoon of President Goodluck Jonathan and General Muhammadu Buhari, identified itself as the Nigerian Cyber Army. The INEC on its Twitter handle, @INECNIGERIA, confirmed the hacking, adding that it was working to rectify it and indeed after some hours, it was recovered.
ELECTORAL VIOLENCE HERE AND THERE
From South West to South East, North to South-South, there were reports of violence and in various degrees. In Akwa Ibom State, hoodlums said to be agents of the Peoples Democratic Party, on Saturday, snatched ballot boxes at Nungudoe Itak, Ikono, in the Ikono Local Government Area of the State. They had pretended to be fighting only to later swoop on the electoral officers and snatch the ballot boxes. Some of them were later seen thumb-printing the ballot papers, allegedly in favour of the PDP candidates in the area.
HOODLUMS TAKE OVER OSHODI, LAGOS
Weeks before the election, Oshodi, one of the areas known for notorious activities in Lagos, had been in the news over riots. On Sunday, March 29, 2015, the hoodlums stuck again, this time, attempting to snatch ballot boxes. They were however, were over power with the assistance of security men on duty as well as the determined electorates.
JONATHAN’S AIDE ESCAPES LYNCHING IN KANO
The Senior Special Assistant to President Goodluck Jonathan on School Agriculture, Dr. Baraka Sani, on Saturday, in Kano, escaped death in the hands of suspected political thugs, who prevented her from voting. The incident happened at Jigriya Ward in Dakatar Quarters, Nasarawa area of Kano State, when Baraka was attempting to cast her vote. Missiles were hauled at her. Until a good Samaritan came to her rescue, shielded and escorted her from the scene to a waiting black Honda Pilot Jeep, which zoomed off immediately.
SAME IN EBONYI
Several cases of election violence were also recorded in Ebonyi State on Saturday. Hoodlums shot and snatched ballot boxes in some polling booths across the state. At the polling booth in Nwakpu Market Square, Ikwo Local Government Area, which is about 400 metres from Governor Martin Elechi’s house, an unidentified man emerged from the bush and shot several times into the air. While the voters, police officers and ad-hoc staff of the Independent National Electoral Commission fled to safety, the suspect and three other men carried the ballot boxes and other election materials and disappeared.
ALSO IN EDO
The Chairman of Obagienevbosa Community in Ikpoba-Okha Local Government Area of Edo State, Igie Osayande, was clubbed to death by suspected political thugs at Ward 9, Units 9, 10 and 11 in the community on Saturday .The victim was reportedly shot along with his brother, Igie Obafuedo, who was lucky to be taken to a nearby hospital.
According to a party agent, the attackers had stormed the voting centre, ordering to be accredited. This was long after accreditation had ended and they were denied the opportunity by the presiding officer, who told them that voting had already commenced. They returned to the ward after with other members of the gang, scattered the ballot boxes and tore the ballot papers. It was in an attempt to resist them that the APC youth leader, Igie Osagiede, was attacked by the thugs and clubbed to death.
GUN SHOTS, BOMBINGS IN ENUGU AND RIVERS
Tension heightened in Rivers, Anambra and Enugu States on Saturday following bombings, killings and arrests in some polling units. In Rivers State, a soldier and two civilians were said to have been shot dead by suspected political thugs at polling centres in Ozuoha and Kpite in Ikwerre and Tai Local Government Areas of the state.
Sources said the gunmen opened fire where voters had gathered for accreditation and that a bullet hit the soldier, who died on the spot.
Brigade Commander 2 Brigade, Bori Camp, Port Harcourt, Koko Essien, confirmed the incident. One of the civilians, Sampson Wona, was said to have been shot dead while waiting to be accredited at a polling unit in Ozuoha .
The second civilian, who like Wona, was a member of the APC, was killed in Kpite, Tai LGA.
Shortly after these incidents, the APC in the state alleged that scores of its members were either killed, 100 arrested or many disenfranchised. This was part of the reasons the party called for the total cancellation of votes in Rivers State and even embarked on a protest led by the Governor.
BOMB SCARE IN ANAMBRA
A bomb explosion scared away voters who came early for accreditation at Ayom na Okpala Primary School, 00 1 polling unit, Amenyi Ward 1, Awka, Anambra State on Saturday as they scampered for safety. Earlier, an explosion was said to have occurred at another unit in Onitsha South. Eye witness accounts described the blast as a dynamite. The roof of one of the classroom blocks was destroyed as a result of the explosion, but no loss of life.
BOKO HARAM STRIKES AGAIN
Gombe State Police Command confirmed that no fewer than nine people lost their lives in Dukku and Nafada Local Government Areas of the state on Saturday, when suspected Boko Haram members attacked some polling units in the two areas. Spokesperson for the command, Fwaje Atajiri, told newsmen that the gunmen stormed Birin-Fulani and Shole polling units at about 9am and three people were killed. He said: “They later proceeded to nearby Dukku Local Government, where a member of the Gombe State House of Assembly, Umaru Aminu, also known as Maimasallaci, was killed with four others and the police station in the town was torched.” The determined voters, however, reportedly went back to cast their votes after the insurgents’ attack.
AMAECHI’S MILD DRAMA WITH THE MILITARY
Embattled Rivers State Governor and Director-General of the All Progressives Congress Presidential Campaign Organisation, , Mr. Rotimi Amaechi, had a mild drama with the security agencies at his polling unit as he refused to be accredited when the officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission declined to produce the result sheet for Omuanwa Ward in Ikwerre Local Government Area.
The governor, who turned up around 10.00am, was told that there were no election result sheets and that the card readers deployed in the area failed to work. A mild drama later ensued when Amaechi was stopped by the Brigade Commander, 2 Brigade, Bori Camp, Port Harcourt, Brigadier General Essien Essien, who told him not to drive around during election when he tried driving around, and after his encounter with INEC people.
SHOCKING WINNERS AND LOSERS
…IT STARTED INSIDE ASO ROCK
The greatest surprise was the defeat of President Goodluck Jonathan inside the Presidential Villa, Abuja, by the presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress, Gen. Muhammadu Buhari (retd.)There are two polling units-Unit 021 and 022-located side-by-side in the seat of power. Buhari polled a total of 613 votes in the two polling units while Jonathan scored 595. At Unit 021 and 022, Jonathan beat Buhari to the second position with 293 votes while the APC candidate scored 265 votes and 348 and 302 respectively.
OBASANJO DELIVERS FOR APC
When former President Olusegun Obasanjo openly tore his PDP membership card in February, many observers believed he would work for the opposition party in Ogun State. True to that belief, he won his polling unit, Ward 11, Unit 2, Shokori, Abeokuta North Local Government Area of Ogun State, for the All Progressive Congress. APC polled 100 in presidential votes, while the PDP got 16. In the votes for Senate, the APC got 93, while the PDP got eight. The Social Democratic Party got 15, while the Peoples Party of Nigeria got two. House of Representatives votes also went to the APC, which polled 98, while the PDP got eight. The SDP had 12.
APC CHAIRMAN, OYEGUN LOSES TO PDP IN EDO
National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, Chief John Odigie Oyegun, lost his ward to the Peoples Democratic Party, in Saturday’s presidential elections despite the fact that the state is under the control of the APC.
In the two units made up Ward 2 of the Staff Training School at GRA Benin, the APC lost.
At unit one, the PDP polled 95 votes in the presidential election while APC polled 78 votes.
The party also polled 94 votes in the senatorial election while APC polled 85 votes.
In the House of Representatives, the PDP polled 95 votes while the APC polled 80 votes.
At unit two, where Oyegun cast his vote, the PDP polled 88 votes in the presidential election while APC polled 65. For the House of Reps., PDP polled 79 votes while APC polled 75.
BUHARI TROUNCES JONATHAN AT HIS POLLING UNIT
Presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress, Buhari, trounced President Goodluck Jonathan in his polling unit in Sakin Yara “A”, Kofar Baru 3, in Daura Local Government Area of Katsina State.
Out of the 501 votes cast in the presidential polls, APC got 499, PDP had no vote. As 3 votes were voided. Similarly, in the National Assembly elections, APC polled 478 for the Senate, PDP 18; the People’s Democratic Movement, PDM got 3 votes while 3 votes were invalidated. APC also took the day in the House of Representatives contest as it got500 votes while PDP and APGA polled 1 vote each.
BODE GEORGE LOSES UNIT, LAMENTS
Lagos’ PDP godfather and Board of Trustees member, Chief Bode George, was one of the biggest politicians who lost their polling units to the opposition. At his polling unit 001, Evans/Adu Street, Lagos Island, the PDP got 108 votes while the APC had 109 in the presidential elections.
But the man has been complaining. He accused the Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Prof. Attahiru Jega, of failure to have an alternative plan for possible disappointment of smart card readers used for the elections.
He added that if Jega had listened to the PDP’s suggestion that a viable alternative should be planned, the problem of faulty card readers would have been easily resolved.
FAYEMI WINS WARD 9, MONTHS AFTER EXIT
After losing woefully to Governor Ayodele Fayose 9 months ago in the governorship election on June 21, 2014, former Governor of Ekiti State, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, won at his Ward 11, unit 009. APC polled 140 in the presidential election while the Peoples Democratic Party got 24. In the senatorial election, the APC polled 135 while the PDP got 21 and for the House of Representatives, APC scored 142 to the PDP’s 22.
FAYOSE, A TRUE GRASS ROOTER
Governor Ayo Fayose delivered his polling unit, David Primary School, Afao Ekiti, to the PDP.
PDP got 189 votes while APC got 24. At the senate level, PDP got 181 while APC got 25.
House of Representatives was 185 for the PDP and 21 for APC.
SAMBO BREAKS 4-YEAR JINX
The Vice President, Architect Namadi Sambo, finally broke the jinx by securing victory for the PDP after being unable to do so in 2011. In his polling unit, at Kabala Doki, ward 5, Police College, polling unit 11, the PDP polled 105 votes for the presidential elections while the APC got 20 votes.
FOLARIN, AKINJIDE FAIL PDP IN IBADAN
The governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party in Oyo State, Senator Teslim Folarin, failed to deliver his local government to his party. The presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress, Buhari, scored 12,291 while President Goodluck Jonathan polled 7,175 votes. Folarin’s Ona-Ara LGA, the same local government that the Minister of State, FCT, Oloye Jumoke Akinjide also comes from, was won by APC with over 5,000 votes.
TINUBU ALWAYS DELIVERS
National Leader of All Progressives Congress and former Governor of Lagos State, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu and his wife, Senator Oluremi Tinubu, ensured victory for their party at their respective polling units.
At polling unit 047, on Kaffi/Sunday Adigun Street, Alausa, Ikeja, where the former governor voted, the APC scored 180 votes while the PDP came a distant second with 55 votes. Senator Remi Tinubu of the APC got 105 votes while her rival in the PDP, Mr. Ade Dosunmu, got 21 votes. In the presidential poll, the PDP got 25 while the APC scored 106.
JIMI AGBAJE BEATEN IN HIS UNIT
The governorship candidate of the of the Peoples Democratic Party in Lagos State, Mr. Jimi Agbaje, lost to the APC. While the APC got 126 votes for the presidential election at his polling unit, his party could only garner 60. For the senatorial election, the PDP got 60 while the APC got 129.
MIMIKO DELIVERS HIS UNIT, LOSES IN OPPOSITION’S STRONGHOLDS
President Goodluck Jonathan’s South West campaign coordinator and Ondo State Governor, Dr. Olusegun Mimiko, delivered his unit, at Mona Clinic, Unit 20, Ward 7, Ondo West Local Government Area, defeating the All Progressives Congress with 68 votes. The breakdown of presidential results there indicated that PDP polled 179 votes, while APC polled 111 votes. In the senatorial election, PDP garnered 179 votes as against APC with 109 votes.
The PDP also defeated APC by scoring 177 votes while the latter scored 103 at the unit for the House of Reps. Meanwhile, at the various polling units in Akure South LGA which is the opposition’s stronghold, APC had a better showing.
AHMADU ALI COULDN’T DELIVER
The Director-General, PDP Presidential Campaign Organisation, Dr. Ahmadu Ali, lost his GRA, Idah polling unit. For the presidential election, APC got 173 while PDP got 128.
LIKEWISE BABANGIDA ALIYU
Buhari was victorious in the polling unit of Niger State Governor, Dr. Babangida Aliyu, of the PDP.
Buhari polled 459 votes, while President Goodluck Jonathan secured 161 votes at unit 011, Musa Umar Close, Tudun Wada South, Chanchaga. Again, the governor who contested for the senate also lost.
BUKOLA SARAKI RETURNS TO SENATE
Dr. Bukola Saraki won the Kwara Central senatorial district ticket to return as a senator. The influential politician who also supports the State Governor, Ahmed Abdufatah, polled 118,897 votes out of total valid votes of 187,585 to defeat his closest rival, Alhaji AbdulRazak AbdulRahaman of the PDP who polled 66,864 votes.
SULEIMAN ABUBAKAR HUMBLED
One of President Jonathan’s loyalists in Kwara State and the Minister of National Planning, Dr. Suleiman Abubakar, lost to the APC in his polling unit, with the PDP scoring 27 votes against 377 for the APC in the presidential election. PDP, again, scored only 29 votes against 386 for the APC in the senate and 35 votes against APC’s 385 for the House of Representatives.
BOLA SHAGAYA TOO
Business mogul and close associate of First Lady, Dame Patience Jonathan, Hajia Bola Shagaya and her son, Sherrif, who contested for a House of Representatives seat in Ilorin West and Asa Federal Constituency, lost in their polling units. Results show that Shagaya equally lost to the APC in her Ojuekun Sarunmi Unit 02, where APC polled 149 against their 88 for the House of Representatives and 140 against 90 for the Senate. However, the PDP scored 143 votes against 83 for the APC in the presidential race at the polling unit.
SATI RAMON OUT
In Lagos Island, constituency 2, Hon. Yakub Balogun was declared the winner. Balogun, of APC, scored 16,437 against socialite Ramon Salawe, aka Sati Ramon of PDP, who scored 7,305.
KASHAMU BURUJI NOW A SENATOR
In Ogun State, APC led with two senators, from Central and West while controversial politician and businessman, Buruji Kashamu triumphed in the other-East. Oladipupo Adebutu, son of billionaire business man, Chief Kessington Adebutu, won the House of Representative seat for Remo Federal Constituency.
ABIMBOLA DARAMOLA WINS IN EKITI
In Ekiti State, Mrs. Fatimat Raji-Rasaki, wife of former Lagos MILAD, Brig. Gen. Raji Rasaki, won a senate slot. Likewise former Deputy Governor of the state, Mrs. Biodun Olujimi. Kayode Fayemi’s helmsman, Abimbola Daramola also won and will be returning to the National Assembly as a legislator.
DAVIDO’S UNCLE NOW A SENATOR IN OSUN
From Osun State, billionaire uncle of singer Davido, Alhaji Isiaka Adeleke, returns to Senate for the second term. This is on the ticket of APC.
AMOSUN DISGRACES OSOBA IN OGUN
Embattled Governor of Ogun State, Sen. Ibikunle Amosun, disgraced his former party leader and founder of Social Democratic Party, SDP, Chief Segun Osoba. As Osoba’s SDP failed to make any impact in both of the presidential and the National Assembly elections. Presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress, Buhari defeated the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, President Goodluck Jonathan, who is seeking re-election, in Ogun State. Out of the 19 local governments released as at Sunday, March 29,2015, APC won in 12.
DINO MELAYE TO REPLACE SMART ADEYEMI
Hon. Dino Melaye, of the All Progressives Congress, Kogi West Senatorial District, defeated the incumbent, Senator Smart Adeyemi. Adeyemi, a candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, came third in the race as the Accord Party, candidate, Hon. Sam Aro, came second.
ORJI WINS IN ABIA
Governor Theodore Orji was elected a senator for the people of Abia Central Senatorial District, beating his All Progressives Grand Alliance challenger, Emmanuel Nweke by 65,653 votes to 46,070 votes.
FOR LEO OGOR, AN EASY WIN
In Delta State, Deputy Leader of the House of Representatives, Hon. Leo Ogor, easily beat off a challenge from his APC opponent to coast home for a record fourth term in the House.
OSUN FOR BUHARI, EKITI FOR JONATHAN
In Osun, Buhari polled 254,739 votes while Jonathan scored 168, 476. In Ekiti, Jonathan polled 176,474 votes to 120,332 polled by Buhari.
NIGER GOVERNOR LOSES SENATORIAL BID TO APC
Niger State Governor and the Chairman, Northern States Governors Forum (NSGF), Dr. Mu’azu Babangida Aliyu, lost his senate bid as he was defeated by the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate, David Umaru. He lost in five of the nine local government areas in the Niger East senatorial district. The governor contested under the platform of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
HOW THE PARTIES STAND AS AT MORNING OF MONDAY, MARCH 30
All Progressives Congress was leading in Katstina (where its presidential flagbearer comes from), Kano, Kaduna, Ogun, Lagos, Kwara, Kogi, Oyo, Osun, Niger, Bauchi, Borno, Ondo, Sokoto, Jigawa and FCT. While Presidents Jonathan’s Peoples Democratic Party was holding sway in Ekiti, Benue, Delta, Abia, Imo, Enugu, Nasarawa, Edo, Plateau, Imo and Bayelsa, the home state of the president and even Rivers, which was marred by violence.
UCHE EKWUNIFE UPSTAGES NGIGE, UMEH
House of Reps. member, Hon. Uche Ekwunife, caused a major upset in Anambra Central. The hard working politician who decamped from APGA to PDP floored the incumbent, Dr. Chris Ngige, also a former governor and APGA Chairman, Chief Victor Umeh. Another surprise winner for the senate is Princess Stella Oduah, former Minister of Aviation. She will represent Anambra North. Both on the ticket of PDP.