By Joshua Chibuzo Andrew, Owerri
The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, has commenced an early distribution of ‘Electoral Materials’ for the Supplementary election which will be conducted in Mbaitoli/Ikeduru federal constituency and Ahiazu-Mbaise state constituency seats both in Imo state.
The umpire had declared the two areas inconclusive on February 25th and March 18, 2023 respectively, on accounts of irregularities, absence of its officials in some of the areas and electoral violence witnessed on the day of election.
The supplementary exercise, according to the INEC, will hold at 58 polling units across Mbaitoli and Ikeduru LGAs.
Uche Ogbuagu, the Labour Party candidate for Mbaitoli/Ikeduru federal constituency, who spoke to newsmen on Thursday, said that he was leading his closest rival, Akarachi Amadi, with over 5000 votes.
Meanwhile, apart from the APGA candidate, Henry Nwawuba, who has voluntarily withdrawn from the race, other candidates including Akarachi Amadi of the APC, Osmond Ukanacho of the PDP and Chinonso Uba of the ADC, are still in the race.
Nwawuba is the incumbent member representing the federal constituency at the Green Chamber. He is a second timer.
For Ahiazu-Mbaise state constituency, the incumbent member, Samuel Otuibe, who is the APC candidate is to slug it out with the PDP’s Rex Okoro in a few polling units today.
It would also be recalled that the Nkwerre/Nwangele/Isu/Njaba federal constituency election was yet to produce a winner.
The Imo Resident Electoral Commissioner, Prof. Silvia Agu, was recently quoted as saying that the results of the constituency were still being reviewed at the INEC National Headquarters, Abuja.
We said, “as soon as the review process is completed, the winner will be declared.”
Similarly, the Imo PDP had asked INEC to Modestus Osakwe, the PDP candidate for Isu state constituency, winner of the election having polled the highest number of votes.
The state Publicity Secretary of PDP, Collins Opuruzor, in a recent press conference, warned INEC not to yield to the demands of the APC by fixing for a supplementary election in Isu, insisting that its candidate won with over 1000 votes as election, according to him, successfully took place in 122 out of the 123 polling units in Isu LGA.
It was also learnt that the APC’s Ideato-North and Ideato-South state constituency members-elect have not been issued Certificates of Return.
This, according to reports, was due to an injunction filed by the PDP’s Ideato-north/Ideato-south member-elect, Ikenga Ugochinyere, accusing the of comprising the process by declaring the two APC candidates winners of that election.