How Okorocha emerged winner of governorship poll in Imo
AFTER weeks of tension on who would pilot the affairs of Imo State for the next four years, beginning from May 29, the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Rochas Okorocha, was declared winner by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) yesterday.
The Peoples Democratic Party’s (PDP) candidate, Chief Emeka Ihedioha, who is also the deputy speaker of the House of Representatives, was Okorocha’s closest rival in the keenly contested election that went into a re-run.
Incumbent Governor Okorocha (now governor-elect) beat Ihedioha with 96,291 votes. He polled a clear majority vote of 416,996 against Ihedioha’s 320,705 votes. INEC’s Chief Returning Officer in the state was Prof. Ibidabo Obe, the Vice Chancellor of the Federal University of Technology, Ikwo, Ebonyi State.
He disclosed that a total of 1,902,614 registered voters were recorded, in which 847,328 presented themselves for the exercise.
INEC officials, party agents, journalists and observers — local and international — were present at the collation centre, along the Port Harcourt Road, Owerri.
Obe said that Okorocha won in 20 local councils, while Ihedioha emerged tops in only three councils where the re-run took place. After the re-run, the governor polled additional 31,326 votes above the deputy speaker’s 13,624 votes in Saturday’s exercise.
Okorocha won in Nkwerre (APC, 255, PDP, 164), Oru West (APC 395, PDP 129), Okigwe (APC 603, PDP 76), Orlu (APC 687, PDP 179), Ihitte Uboma (131, PDP 66), Nwangele (APC 271, PDP 55) and Orsu (APC 471, PDP 218).
Others included Njaba (APC 1,095, PDP 236), Obowo (APC 697, PDP 505), Owerri North (APC 674, PDP 620), Onuimo (APC 412, PDP 207), Ohaji/Egbema (APC 1210, PDP 996), Owerri West (APC 1342, PDP 793), Ehime Mbano (APC 604, PDP 393), Mbaitoli (APC 3997, PDP 2422), Oru East (APC 7154, PDP 1168), Ng or Opkala (APC 416, PDP 323), Isu (APC 2773, PDP 979), Isiala mbano (APC 1415, PDP 1000), Oguta (APC 5030, PDP 1378).
Ihedioha led in Ezinihitte Mbaise (APC 213, PDP 715), Aboh Mbaise (APC 686, PDP 939), and Ikeduru (APC 786, PDP 1022).
According to the Electoral Act, if the lead margin holder has less than what was cancelled in the votes, the inconclusive application would be applied, such was the case in April 11, when Okorocha scored 79,529 above Ihedioha, whereas 144,715 votes were cancelled in about 255 polling units of 23 of 27 local councils of the state.
Obe, therefore, declared Okorocha winner of the 2015 governorship election in Imo State.
Dedicating his victory to the Imo people, the governor had promised to work harder for the development of the state.
Although Ihedioha was yet to make an official statement as at the time of filing this report, it was gathered that he was studying the results with a view to determining the next line of action.