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PDP raises alarm over assembly seat in Niger

Saka Bolaji, Minna

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Agaie Local Government Area of Niger state has raised the alarm, over alleged attempts by the state Deputy Governor, Alhaji Mohammed Ahmed Ketso and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to upturn the result of the state house of assembly election won by the party.

The party has therefore, advised the deputy governor and the electoral umpire to desist from actualizing the plans to upturn the announced result of the March 9 state House of Assembly election won by its candidate, Yahaya Abdullahi.

According to the PDP, there was an ongoing attempt by Ahmed Ketso and the Resident Electoral Commissioner, Prof. Samuel Egwu to carry out a re-run in two out of the three units that were cancelled because of alleged over voting, ballot box snatching and violence after the results had been announced and the result sheet was duly signed by the party agents.

PDP returning officer at the poll, Alhaji Abubakar Iman Ndeji, who made this allegation at a press briefing in Minna, the state capital, said that the results were formally announced by the council returning officer, Prof. Musa Kolo as directed by the electoral officer, Yakubu Alawa.

According to him, the All Progressive Congress (APC) candidate, Umar Abdullahi scored 17, 920 votes while the Peoples Democratic Party candidate, Yahaya Abdullahi defeated him with 18, 026 votes as announced at the collation centre (INEC’s office) in Agaie and contained in Form EC 8E (1) result sheet duly signed by the relevant people.

Ndeji noted that the PDP was heading to court to seek an injunction to stay action on the said matter, alleging that deputy governor in desperation has invited traditional rulers, imams and others from the units of Jikpangi, Wuna-Degeci and Akwanu where elections were cancelled.

He said that at the closed door meeting held at Ketso’s house in Minna, the deputy governor implored them to mobilize votes and support for the APC candidate during the planned re-run, assuring them of the immediate provision of social amenities, like boreholes, construction and renovation of primary schools in their locaties.

The former PDP council chairman warned that any attempt to upturn the already announced result may lead to serious crisis in the area because the people have spoken through their votes.