The hitherto inconclusive election eventually came to a conclusion on Sunday following the declaration of results of Saturday’s supplementary election results in the troublesome Southern Ijaw Local Government Area and 101 polling units across six local government areas.
According to results announced by the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC’s returning officer for the poll and Vice -Chancellor of the University of Calabar, Prof. Zena Akpagu, Dickson of the PDP secured 134,998 votes to beat his arch rival and the candidate of APC, Chief Timipre Sylva, who polled 86,852 votes.
Further breakdown of the figures shows that Governor Dickson won in Southern Ijaw Local Government Area with 23,081 votes while Sylva garnered 10,216 votes. Following the result, Governor Dickson extended his initial lead of 33,150 votes to 48,146 to retain his position after the epic electoral battle.
Amid tight security inside the multipurpose hall of the Yenagoa Local Government Area secretariat, Governor Dickson was declared winner by Prof. Akpagu for “having satisfied the requirements of the law and scoring the highest votes cast.”
Prof. Akpagu, however announced the cancellation of 39,679 votes in Southern Ijaw for over voting, ballot box snatching, non-use of card readers and other irregularities.
How Dickson won:
Breakdown of the results shows that Dickson won in seven of the eight local government areas. Sylva won in only his Brass Local Government Area.
In Yenagoa Local Government Area, Dickson won the supplementary election with 839 votes as against Sylva’s 448 votes. However, the consolidated results for the Council showed that PDP and Dickson polled 25,097 to defeat APC and its candidate who scored 15,011.
In Brass, the APC candidate widened his lead in the six polling units where the rerun election was held. Sylva polled 1,679 to extend his previous lead from 21,755 to 23,434 votes. Dickson got five votes to have a consolidated total of 6517 votes.
In Ogbia, Dickson extended his lead in the 27 polling units where the rerun poll was held. He polled 1290 votes to lead from 13051 to 14341 votes. Sylva added only 139 votes to get 9249.
Also, the PDP and Dickson won in Ekeremor, the local government area of the Minister of State for Agriculture, Senator Heineken Lokpobiri, amidst protests by the APC. Dickson extended his lead from 14,602 votes to 17,297 after securing 2,695 in the 32 polling units where the supplementary election was held in the area.
Sylva got 257 votes poll to increase his consolidated votes in the area to 8,178.
There were, however, controversies in Ekeremor, following the cancellation of 17 units by the local government collation officer over alleged over-voting, disagreements on electoral procedures and diversion of electoral materials.
However, in Nembe, Sylva won the supplementary election after scoring 1,400 votes but still trailed behind Dickson in the consolidated votes. Sylva had 8,374 overall votes, Dickson got 11,927 votes after securing 1,163 in the rerun election to win the council area. The announcement of Nembe results also ended in protest following the cancellation of 883 votes.
By Olisemeka Obeche