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Kogi APC Aspirants’ Forum rejects Yahaya Bello for second term, warns Buhari, Oshiomhole

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The All Progressives Congress (APC) Aspirants’ Forum, Kogi State chapter, on Monday, rejected the candidature of Governor Yahaya Bello for a second term in office over alleged bad leadership and non-performance.

This was made known in a communique issued by the forum at the end of
its meeting on Monday in Abuja.

The communique signed by its chairman, Mr Ben Adaji, appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari, the National Chairman of APC, Adams Oshiomhole and members of its National Working Committee (NWC) not to give the governorship ticket to Bello.

It added that giving the ticket to Bello to run for a second term would be a risk, saying the party may lose the state to the opposition.

It said Bello had remained adamant in spite of directives by President Muhammadu Buhari to all APC governors to reconcile and accommodate the party`s aspirants after the last primaries.

The communique alleged that Bello had continued to treat Kogi aspirants as enemies and second class citizens in the party they laboured for.

It said the forum had, therefore, resolved to mobilise and support one of its members to contest the forthcoming primaries and the subsequent governorship election slated for November.

It added that after much deliberations and debate, the forum nominated three of its members which included: Alhaji Yahaya Audu, Chief Adedoyin, and Dr Toyin Akanle for the contest.

“At the end of the deliberations, Alhaji Yahaya Audu was unanimously endorsed to contest the forthcoming election,” the communique said.

The also forum used the opportunity to pledge unalloyed support for the President Buhari administration.

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Kogi election: Gov Bello dedicates victory to mother, people

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Kogi State Governor, Yahaya Bello, has dedicated his victory in last Saturday’s governorship election to his mother and the entire people of the state.

The governor who spoke shortly after INEC officially announced him as duly returned after he beat his main rival, Musa Wada of the Peoples Democratic Party, also expressed gratitude to all those who made the victory possible for his party, the All Progressives Congress.

Governor Bello paid tribute to those who lost their lives saying that their killers would not be spared the wrath of the law of the land.

“While we sympathise with those who lost their lives during the election, I assure you that everyone who had a hand in their killings will not be spared, they will be made to face the full wrath of the law of the land,” he said.

Bello said that his mother played a vital role in his quest for the position and deserved to be so honoured.

The governor assured the people that he will never go back on his campaign promises adding that the victory will inspire him and his deputy, Edward Onoja, to do more in taking the state to the next level of development as promised during the electioneering campaign.

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Armed men invade INEC office in Kogi community, chase officials, observers into hiding

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The atmosphere was tense Saturday night at about 10 p.m. in Ugwolawo community, Ofu local government of Kogi State, as thugs who claimed to be from Zamfara State invaded the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) office.

Collation of results was ongoing when the armed men arrived.

For more than an hour, the armed men shot sporadically into the air and are believed to have engaged a police team that arrived later in a shootout.

When they shot sporadically, they shouted on top of their voice for residents of the area to remain indoors and not come out to continue the collation exercise at the INEC office.

Our reporter, among other observers who were caught up in the fracas, had to run into a house and lie down for over an hour.

Residents and election observers were still in hiding at the time of this report.

Efforts to contact the INEC spokesperson and the police spokesperson in Kogi State were unsuccessful as both did not respond to calls and text messages.

Premium Times earlier reported how thugs allegedly loyal to the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) invaded Dekina community in Dekina local government of Kogi State in an attempt to hijack results sheets for the Dekina Ward.

The PDP collation agent for the ward, Obaka James, said the results were already collated and being signed by agents, when gunshot sounds rented the air.

Mr Obaka said; “We know the attackers, they had already operated in the morning and their leader was arrested. But we don’t know how he was released again. Now you can see the problems he is causing. But they don’t know that I have collated result with me.”

He said across eight other local governments in the senatorial districts, collation had been done in most wards.”So, why is ours different? Every time, there must be crisis claiming lives in this place. Is election war?”

Earlier, at about 1:13 a.m. on Saturday, thugs had invaded the registration centre for ward 2 in the local government, which is located at Odu Ofomu community and attacked the electoral officers.

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INEC speaks on violence in Bayelsa, Kogi elections

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The electoral commission, INEC has condemned cases of thuggery in the ongoing gubernatorial elections in Bayelsa and Kogi states.

The commission said this in a statement signed by the INEC Commissioner of Information and Voter Education, Festus Okoye on Saturday.

“Unfortunately, however, despite all the efforts of the commission and the political parties to promote peaceful elections, including several engagements with stakeholders and signing of Peace Accords, there are reports indicating that the process was in several places affected by thuggery and violence.

“The commission unequivocally condemns this. We are still receiving, collating and evaluating these reports as we move into the critical phase of result collation.”

Read INEC’s full statement

INDEPENDENT NATIONAL ELECTORAL COMMISSION

PLOT 436. ZAMBEZI CRESCENT. MAITAMA DISTRICT PM B. 0184 GARKI -ABUJA.

PRESS RELEASE

Voting has now closed in all polling units in the elections in Bayelsa and Kogi States. The Commission deployed staff and materials in 4,352 polling units in the two States for the Govemorship elections, Kogi West Senatorial rerun election and Bras 1 State Constituency supplementary election in Bayelsa State. In addition, National Commissioners, Resident Electoral Commissioners and other staff were deployed to monitor and supervise the elections. These field officers are regularly submitting real-time reports to the Commission on developments in the field.

The Commission is carefully monitoring the processes. Reports from accredited observers and our officials in the field indicate that most voters who were willing to vote had the opportunity to do so. The Commission delivered materials to its two State ofhces in good time and made adequate preparations for the movement of staff and materials to the various voting locations., Unfortunately, however, despite all the efforts of the Commission and the s pf the political parties to promote peaceful elections, including several enga ents’ with stakeholders and signing of Peace Accords, there are reports indicating that the process was in several places affected by thuggery and violence. which the Commission unequivocally condemns We are still receiving. collating and evaluating these reports as we move into the critical phase of result collation.

Results will be collated at Registration Areas, Local Government Areas and State levels. Staff of the Commission are ready to receive these results and stakeholders are advised to keep to their commitments to ensure peaceful conduct. All electoral officials are reminded of the oath of neutrality they subscribed to.

Finally, the Commission calls on the general public to remain calm, while assuring voters in the two States of the resolve of the Commission to ensure that the elections are concluded fairly and credibly.

Festus Okoye Esq. National Commissioner and Chairman Information and Voter Education Committee

November 16th, 2019

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