Despite INEC announcing the APC winner, candidate of the PDP in the just concluded Imo North Senatorial Bye-election, Chief Emma Okewulonu has demanded from the electoral body to be declared winner.
Okewulonu in a statement after the election said he should be declared winner in accordance to the extant laws in line with the Electoral Act as amended.
According to him, “It is not in doubt that the Saturday 5th December, 2020 senatorial bye-election was never contested by the All Progressives Congress (APC). In other words, the APC, following a series of conflicting court judgments went into that election without a substantive candidate.
“The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), being fully aware of this undisputed fact, could not therefore, legally announce any person masquerading as the APC’s candidate, as the winner.
“It is in fact rather absurd, and an intolerable aberration for INEC to have allowed the APC to even purport to have participated in that election, or to record any votes thereof in its favour. In the history of elections in Nigeria, it has never happened that a political party is declared as an election winner without at the same time announcing the corresponding candidate of that winning party who is to benefit from its victory.
“INEC should stop playing the ostrich, and do the needful, in order to safeguard the sanctity and integrity of our electoral process. As an unbiased umpire which it ought to be, INEC should have given life to the series of judicial pronouncements barring the purported two candidates of the APC namely, Senator Ifeanyi Araraume and Mr. Frank Ibezim, from the election, as no party ever fields two candidates simultaneously for the same position in the same election.
“That INEC should immediately declare the PDP, with my humble self as its candidate, as the rightful winner of the 5th December, 2020 Imo North senatorial bye-election, in line with the Electoral Act (as amended). It is indisputable that I won the election in accordance with extant laws.
“INEC should, without further delay, comply with the court judgments disqualifying both Senator Araraume and Mr. Frank Ibezim from taking part in the elections. It cannot continue to play a hide and seek game in order to evade the law. APC never participated in the election under review.
“No political party fields two candidates for the same position in any election. What the APC did in the just concluded Imo North senatorial bye-election is unlawful, ultra vires, and sets a very dangerous precedent, and stands condemned in its entirety”.