The governorship candidate of the African Action Congress (AAC) in Rivers State, Biokpomabo Awara says his party will reclaim the “stolen mandate”, referring to his loss in the election.
He alleged gross irregularities in the resumed collation of the state governorship election result that saw Nyesom Wike of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) reelected as Governor of the state.
Wike won the election after polling 886,264 votes to beat Awara, who polled 173,859 votes. The margin was 712,405 votes.
However, Awara said the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) connived with Wike to rig him out of winning the election.
Speaking after the announcement of the result, Awara alleged that Lawrence Chuku, his party agent, was denied access to the collation centre.
Awara said: “Nenye Kocha is not the collation agent of AAC in INEC office, Port Harcourt. Dr. Chuku is the duly-nominated collation agent of AAC, but he was prevented by security personnel at the gate of INEC’s office in Port Harcourt from moving to the collation centre.
“I have the unit by unit results of the March 9, 2019 elections in Rivers State. When they observed that I was leading and they saw the danger coming, they quickly moved on March 10 to save Wike, by suspending the collation of the results, which they resumed on April 1. As at the time the collation was suspended, I had 281,000 votes, as against Wike’s 79,000 votes. So, they (INEC officials) quickly came to his rescue.
“We have written a petition on the electoral fraud in Rivers State to the INEC chairman, stating the actual results, but Professor Yakubu will not take action.”
He urged his supporters to remain calm stating that the result would be challenged and he would “reclaim the stolen mandate”.
“I want Rivers people to be calm. We are going to reclaim the stolen mandate. We should not be troubled and we should never opt for violence.
“I want Rivers people, especially my teeming supporters, who are being pained by what they are seeing, to keep hope alive. Victory is certain. We are going to bring back the stolen mandate,” Awara said.