Mixed reactions trail PDP’s victory in Abia
MIXED reactions now trails the declaration of Dr Okezie Ikpeazu, the Abia State Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate as winner of the governorship election.
Professor Benjamin Ozumba, the returning officer of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in the state, had announced the result in the early hours of yesterday. The announcement, however, triggered celebration among PDP supporters, especially Ikpeazu’s Ukwa Ngwa kinsmen some of whom took to the streets of Umuahia, Aba and Obingwa. Ikpeazu is from Obingwa Local Government Area of the state.
Incumbent Governor Theodore Orji described Ikpeazu as one already well grounded on issues of governance. According to him, ” he (Ikpeazu) is an all-rounder, who obtained his doctorate degree when he was less than 30 years and has been on ground in the state.”
Orji said a template has already been prepared for the governor-elect t to be able to run an “all-inclusive government and keep Abia State united.”
But a chieftain of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), Mr. Ahandi Nweke, was visibly angry over the declaration of Ikpeazu as winner. He vowed that his party would recover the mandate, which he claimed that Abia people gave the APGA candidate, Alex Otti, the former chief executive of Diamond Bank Plc.
Nweke, who was APGA’s candidate for the Abia Central Senatorial District Senate, lost to Governor Orji. He also served as his party’s agent during the collation of results. According to him, “the PDP gave us (APGA) enough grounds to recover our electoral mandate at the Election Tribunal.”
In the same vein, the factional governorship candidate of APGA in Abia, Reagan Ufomba, in an SMS said: “We may have lost the battle (it seems), but certainly not the war. We are entering the most critical and result-oriented stage of the struggle. We lost to societal decadence, insensitivity and high handedness of APGA leadership, we thank Abians for their support.”
When contacted the state All Progressives Congress (APC), Dr Aniym Nyerere, deferred his reaction though he had described the election as a rigging battle between the PDP and APGA.