By Enyichukwu Enemanna
The incumbent Governor of Imo State, South East Nigeria, has secured a second term of four years in office, a result announced on Sunday by the electoral body, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) indicates.
Governor Hope Uzodimma, a former member of the Nigerian Senate and the candidate of All Progressives Congress (APC) in Saturday’s off-season election, polled a total of 540,308 votes to defeat his closest rival, Samuel Anyanwu of the Peoples Democratic Party who came a distant second with a total of 71,503 votes.
Athan Achonu of the Labour Party polled 64,081 votes to come third in the election.
The state Returning Officer for the election, Prof. Abayomi Fasina, who is also the Vice-Chancellor, Federal University, Oye-Ekiti, Ekiti State, announced the results on Sunday morning at INEC’s state collation centre in Owerri, the state capital.
Anthony Ejiogu of the All Progressives Grand Alliance garnered 6,392 votes to come fourth and Jack Ogunewe of the Action Alliance came fifth with 5,756 votes.
The state’s Returning Officer said, “I, Prof. Abayomi Fasina, I was the Returning officer for the Imo state governorship election held on November 11, 2023. That the candidate of the All Progressives Congress, Good Hope Uzodimma, having scored the highest number of votes and satisfied the requirements of the law, is hereby declared the winner of the election and returned elected.”
Uzodimma won in all the 27 Local Government Areas of the state and is expected to be sworn-in for a second term in office on January 14, 2024.
The PDP candidate, Samuel Anyanwu, in a press conference, said that the election was rigged in the favour of Uzodimma.
Also, the deputy governorship candidate of the LP, Tony Nwulu, said that the security agents provided security for INEC staff and APC members to rig the poll.