Goodluck Ibem, Restoration Party (RP) candidate for Aba South State constituency in Abia, has strongly condemned the declaration of a winner in the House of Assembly election for the constituency, by the Independent National Electoral Commission(INEC).
Ibem also rejected results of the election, stressing that it was absurd for INEC to have announced a result when many polling centres in the constituency were deprived of voting.
Ibem in an interview with newsmen, on Wednesday in Aba, said INEC erred in declaring Obinna Ichita the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) candidate winner of an election that should have been declared inconclusive.
“The commission has declared the APGA candidate for Aba South State constituency, Obinna Ichita, as the winner of Saturday’s House of Assembly election.
“It is wrong and totally unacceptable for INEC to declare a candidate winner when election did not hold in the 19 polling units in Ward 6 (Umuogele and Iheorji communities) and nine polling units in Eziukwu Ward 1were cancelled.
“What INEC did in Aba South, is grave injustice to the constituency. INEC favoured the APGA candidate.
“There is no election in Ward 6 and about 9 polling units in Eziukwu Ward 1 were cancelled.
“We are talking of about 30,000 votes in the two areas which are far above the total votes cast. What INEC ought to have done is to declare the election inconclusive, this is the law.
“My agents made our complaints known to INEC ad-hoc staff, but they ignored us.
“I don’t know who INEC is working for, but they should understand that they should not be seen to be favouring one party against the other.
“INEC should not be seen to be biased, but today, they are not neutral. Even the APGA supporters are telling me to go to court, because of INEC’s injustice. Democracy is dead in Nigeria. It is unfortunate,” he said.
The RP candidate called for the adjudication of all electoral petitions before swearing in of the winners of this election.
He said that the prevailing situation where candidates engaged in all sorts of electoral malpractices and were later declared winners should not be allowed.
“I am of the opinion that election petitions should be dispensed with before swearing-in, as this will serve justice to all parties.
“It is grave injustice to the people and other candidates to swear in a candidate who has engaged in all sorts of electoral malpractices to be declared winner.
“If sworn in, he will deploy government apparatus to keep his seat but if petitions are dispensed with before swearing in, it will help to reduce the desperation for political offices in Nigeria,” he said.
Ibem promised to do everything necessary to reclaim his mandate which he said was given to another person.