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Delta bye-election: INEC declares PDP’s Ovuakpoye Evivie winner

Delta bye-election: INEC declares PDP’s Ovuakpoye Evivie winner

THE People’s Democratic Party, PDP, has won the Delta State House of Assembly by-election in the Isoko South Constituency I.

 

The by-election held on Saturday across five wards in the constituency, was meant to fill the vacant seat occasioned by the demise of the member representing the constituency in the state’s legislative arm, Mr. Kenneth Ogba.

 

Earlier, one person was Saturday, shot dead at Irri ward 10 polling unit 5 by suspected hoodlums during the Delta State House of Assembly bye-election in the Isoko South Constituency l to snatch ballot papers being used for the election.

 

A source who pleaded anonymity said the hoodlums armed with AK47 riffles shot sporadically in the air to scare away voters, lamenting that one of the hoodlums shot at the victim for a yet unknown reason.

 

The exercise which recorded a large turnout of voters was hitherto peaceful across the five wards of the constituency, as electorates applauded the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System, BVAS, introduced by the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC before the ugly incident occurred.



There were however issues of machine malfunctioning which delayed the process in some of the units.

 

Mr Ovuakpoye Evivie, who cast his vote at Oleh ward I unit 6 described the BVAS as perfect, adding that “I commend INEC for what l am seeing. The process is fast, unique and simple. The system shows that votes will count.”

 

On his part, Director-General of the PDP Campaign Organization, Sir Itiako Ikpokpo said; “I think this is an interesting election and INEC has tried to do things differently; l am impressed.

 

“The only hiccups l hear is that some of the machines are not working in some of the units. If we continue like this with this kind of manpower and personnel, l think we are getting there slowly but surely.” He expressed optimism that PDP will win the election.

 

Speaking with newsmen after casting his vote at unit Candidate of the Social Democratic Party, SDP, Mr. Emumena Michael said: “I believe INEC has improved it’s system. The system is seamless; however, it is human beings that run the system.

 

Appealing to INEC to avoid corruption in the process, he said: “If rules and guidelines are obeyed, what l saw now is a system that can take our current electoral process to the next level.”

 

Candidate of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Dr Ogaga Ifowodo described the process as very orderly, saying “l am very impressed by the conduct of the voters so far and l think it is democracy working in earnest”.

 

Ifowodo who spoke with newsmen after casting his vote at Oleh Ward I, unit 6 applauded the new system introduced by INEC, saying “Every step that has been taken to enhance the credibility, fairness, accuracy and integrity of the voting system is welcome.



“I hope they will do even more to guarantee the integrity of the process.”

 

Meanwhile, the Resident Electoral Commissioner, REC of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, Mr Monday Udoh-Tom, said the exercise went on smoothly except for eight out of the 84 Bimodal Voters accreditation System machines that had initial issues.

 

Udoh-Tom said the technical problem experienced in some areas, saying; “out of 84 polling units, 8 BVAS had issues. Four were as a result of the wrong positioning of the cameras. It means that the voter position for snapping was noisy, meaning, the background of the pictures does not conform with BVAS requirements”.

 

He said four of the machines were later replaced to enable voting to commence, disclosing that no one was disenfranchised in the polling units that experienced the technical problem from the device.

 

Speaking on the conduct of the election, Managing Director of the Delta State Oil Producing Areas Development Commission, DESOPADEC, Chief Askia Ogieh said the exercise was peaceful and devoid of violence during the voting, “but I cannot be able to speak on what may the situation at the point collation.”

 

On his prediction, he said: “is PDP all the way”, saying “the APC is a house divided against itself. The APC is having irreconcilable differences among them. It will take the second coming of Christ to settle. The crisis is beyond redemption.



Announcing the election result, the Returning Officer of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, Prof Christopher Onosemuode, said the candidate of the PDP, Mr. Ovuakpoye Evivie, polled 6,907 votes.

Delta bye-election: INEC declares PDP’s Ovuakpoye Evivie winner

He said the candidate of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Dr. Ogaga Ifowodo polled 1,301 votes, while the candidate of the Social Democratic Party, SDP, Mr. Emumena Micheal scored 1,291 votes.

 

Onosemuode declared Evivie winner and returned elected.

 

Reacting, Governor Ifeanyi Okowa, on Sunday said the victory of Mr Ovuakpoye Evivie and the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP in Saturday’s by-election for Isoko South Constituency 1 seat in the State’s House of Assembly was a confirmation of PDP’s dominance in the State.

 

Okowa however expressed sadness at the reported killing of a voter in Irri Ward by unknown gunmen and urged security agencies to go after the assailants and bring them to book.

 

Okowa in a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr Olisa Ifeajika, rejoiced with Mr Ovuakpoye Evivie and the PDP on their victories in the by-election, describing it as well deserved.

 

He said the people of Isoko South Constituency 1 across the five wards in the area through the ballots, spoke very lucidly of the choice of Evivie as their representative in the State’s parliament.

 

Okowa, who led members of PDP in the Ward-to-Ward rally prior to the election, expressed joy that the Isoko South people had once again proven their loyalty and commitment to PDP.

 

He said: “On behalf of the government and people of Delta, I congratulate Mr Ovuakpoye Evivie on his victory in the Isoko South Constituency 1 by-election.

 

“It is heart-warming to see him emerge as member-elect and I am grateful to the people of Isoko South for their immense support to our party and their clear message to the opposition in the area.



“Let me also thank the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and security agencies, observers and other stakeholders for a successful election adjudged to be free, fair and credible.

 

“The introduction of the Bimodal Voters Accreditation System (BVAS) by INEC was the hallmark of the election as real voters were duly authenticated, leading to a very credible and fraud-free exercise.

 

“In spite of the peace that characterised the election, I deplore the reported killing of a voter in Irri Ward 10 and, I urge security agencies to go after the culprits and bring them to justice”

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