- Says he won’t take the victory for granted •Berates INEC returning officer•
Governor Rochas Okorocha of Imo State has congratulated the Imo people, especially the people of the Imo West Senatorial District in particular over his Victory in the last Saturday’s election, assuring that he won’t take the victory for granted.
Okorocha, who spoke to the media shortly after the Returning Officer, Prof. Innocent Ibeawuchi at the collection Centre Orlu on Monday, February 25, 2019, declared him winner of the election, expressed worries over the attitude of the Returning Officer in the exercise.
Declaring the result, Prof. Ibeawuchi announced that Okorocha of the APC scored 97,762 votes to emerge the winner, while his closest rival and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate, Hon. Jones Onyeriri had 63,117 votes and the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) candidate, Chief Osita Izunaso scored 30,923 votes.
The governor said, “What baffles me is the attitude of the returning officer in this our exercise. It looks to me that there was a script been played out, which is coming to me as a rude shock, especially the manner elections here have been conducted in Imo State.
“May I put it straight that if election was conducted the way it should be and in line with our constitution and electoral act, we would have won the entire election. What we see here is a lot of people changing the rule and doing certain things to favour a particular party in the State”.
The governor added, “I find it a bit surprise because right now as I speak results are not being collated the way it should be. The centres provided by the constitution are not being used; rather the INEC boss is making other arrangements not really clear to me, because as the result gets there, it is being changed. As I speak to you now, there are attempts to change the President’s results.”
He said, “On my own elections, after having recorded victory in 9 out of the 12 local governments announced, we heard that they are now trying to move the result sheets to Owerri but when we inquired why, the man said he is tired and doesn’t feel safe, when nobody was threatening him.
“At the end if it, we discovered he doesn’t have the declaration sheet. I wonder where this is taking us. I hope INEC would change this system because we will resist them if they try it in the next election”.
The governor remarked, “They should examine the Returning Officer to know his mental state. If he is not mental, then he must be a criminal to ever think of that. How could someone ask you to change the result of an election he has already won?
“My score is above 90,000 and the nearest to me is slightly above half of it, when you combine both Jones and Izunaso’s votes. They can’t match or contest against me in Imo State not to talk of Orlu zone. Am I even supposed to contest for senate in Orlu, I never campaigned but only declared and campaigned for three days.
“I ask the INEC Resident Electoral Commissioner here to quickly correct these anomalies. The Returning Officer is a bloody liar who may be acting a script. I enjoin him to return the money he may have collected from those who understand only rigging in election”.