At exactly 4.39am today, the chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, declared incumbent President Muhammadu Buhari of the All Progressives Congress (APC) as the winner of the 2019 presidential election held last Saturday.
Yakubu said that Buhari polled 15,191,847 votes, the majority votes to clinch the country’s foremost office as against his arch-rival, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP’s)11,262,978 votes.
He said that “having secured the highest number of votes cast in the election, Muhammadu Buhari is hereby returned elected as president.”
In 2015, Buhari won the presidential election with 15,416,921 votes to beat the then incumbent President Goodluck Jonathan, who scored 12,853,162 votes.
Buhari’s 2019 vote is 325,074 lower than the figures of 2015.
In the current election, the president defeated Atiku by a margin of 3,928,869 votes to secure another ticket to govern Nigeria for another four years.
Apart from scoring the highest votes in 19 states of the federation, Buhari met the constitutional requirement of 25 per cent of the votes cast in two-thirds of the 36 states in the country and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), INEC said.
The commission stated that Buhari won the polls convincingly in 19 states while Atiku came top in 17 states and the FCT.
The states won by Buhari, according the electoral umpire, are: Bauchi, Borno, Ekiti, Gombe, Kaduna, Katsina, Kano, Kogi and Kebbi States.
Others are Nasarawa, Niger, Jigawa, Lagos, Ogun, Osun, Sokoto, Zamfara, Yobe, and Zamfara States.
The commission also named the states won by Atiku as Adamawa, Abia, Akwa Ibom, Benue, Bayelsa, Cross River, Delta, and Ondo.
Atiku also won in Edo, Enugu, Ebonyi, Anambra, Imo, Plateau, Rivers, Taraba and Oyo States.
But, Atiku, who many political pundits adjudged as giving the president a good fight, refused to concede defeat.
Before Yakubu announced the winner of the polls, the PDP last night called for the cancellation of the results from Borno, Nasarawa, Yobe and Zamfara States, over alleged irregularities. It also demanded fresh elections in the affected states.
When the collation centre reconvened at 3:41am, Yakubu clarified a number of issues raised by the political parties.
He said that the observed lapses were not enough reasons to cancel the polls.
Before announcing the final results, PDP chief agent, Osita Chidoka, asked Yakubu to suspend the declaration of the winner until elections were held in states and areas where the card reader was not used.
But Yakubu differed, saying that elections were already conducted in such places. He overruled Chidoka and went ahead to announce the results of the 73 political parties that participated in the poll.
After the collation officers from the states presented their reports at the National Collation Centre in Abuja, with Rivers State coming last, a few minutes after mid-night, Yakubu said that the session would reconvene at 3am to announce the winner.
Before he adjourned the sitting, the spokesman of the APC Presidential Campaign Council, Mrs. Festus Keyamo, raised objections to the results from Rivers State, but he was overruled by Prof. Yakubu.
In the first 28 states announced by INEC, Buhari polled 12,061,230 votes in 15 states while Atiku got 8,592,340 votes in 13 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
Subsequent returns from the states consistently put Buhari ahead of Atiku until the last minute when the president secured his re-election ticket for another four years in the State House, Abuja.
Atiku had increased his tally from Cross River, Bayelsa and Delta States to 9,480,078 votes as he polled 887, 738 votes from the three South-South States. He later got 374,743 fromTaraba State where Buhari scored 324,906 votes.
On the other hand, Buhari received 357,415 votes in the three states to raise his collated votes as at 11:00pm (last night) to 12,418,645.
At 11.40pm, INEC completed the collation of the results of Sokoto State, which Buhari won by 496,333 to Atiku’s 361,604.
At 11:55pm, INEC added the results of Kebbi and Zamfara States to the score sheets, which Buhari won with 581,552 to Atiku’s 154, 282 in Kebbi State and 438,682 to the PDP’s candidate’s 125,423 in Zamfara State.
The last state collated was Rivers where Atiku won with 473,971 votes while Buhari received 150,710 votes.
As earlier reported by LEADERSHIP yesterday, which INEC affirmed at the collation centre in Abuja, Buhari scored 612,371 votes to win Niger State while Atiku received 218,052. In Jigawa State, the president scored 794,738 to win the state as Atiku got 289,895.
Buhari also won in Kaduna State with 993,445 votes while Atiku received 649,612. In Anambra State, Atiku snatched the state with 524,738 votes while Buhari had 33,298.
Atiku won in Oyo State with 366,690 votes as against Buhari’s 365,229. In Atiku’s home state of Adamawa, he received 410,266 votes to defeat Buhari who had 378,078.
In Lagos State, Buhari won the election with 580,825 and Atiku followed with 448,015. In Ogun State, the president received 281,762 votes over Atiku’s 194,655.
The PDP candidate defeated Buhari in Edo State where the president came behind with 267,842 votes to Atiku’s 275,691. Atiku repeated his win in Benue State as the president got 347,668 to Atiku’s 356,817 votes.
In Imo State, the APC presidential candidate received 140,463 votes, losing to Atiku, who garnered 334,923 votes. Atiku again clinched Plateau State, where his APC rival received 468,555 and he got 548, 665.
Whatever votes Atiku polled in the above states were neutralised by Kano State, where Buhari hit his first above a million mark as he swept the election with 1,464,768 while PDP’s Atiku came far behind with 391,593. It was the same feat for Buhari in his home state of Katsina as he won with 1,232,133 to Atiku’s 308,456.
Atiku won in Enugu State with 355,553 where Buhari polled 54,423 votes.
The voters in Yobe State favoured Buhari with 497,914 votes where Atiku got only 50,763 votes. In Ondo State, Buhari lost to Atiku, as the former polled 241,769 to the latter’s 275,901 votes. For Abia State, Buhari received 85,058 votes while Atiku won the state with 219,698 votes.
Buhari led in Gombe State with 402,961 votes while Atiku had 138,484 votes. The president also won in Kogi State with 285,894 votes to Atiku’s 218, 207.
In Kwara State, the APC candidate polled 308,984 while his PDP opponent polled 138,184. In Nasarawa State, Buhari forged ahead with 289,903 while Atiku polled 283,847.
In the FCT, the president lost to Atiku as he trailed behind with 152,224 votes while Atiku won with 259,997 votes.
The APC defeated the PDP in Ekiti State, scoring 219,231 votes to the opposition party’s 154,032. In Osun State, the APC won again with 347,634 votes while the PDP got 337,377.
In Cross River State, Buhari managed to get 17,302 while Atiku overshadowed him with 295,737 votes. The situation was the same in Delta State as Atiku shot down the APC presidential candidate with 594,068 votes to 221,292.
Atiku led Buhari in Bayelsa State with 197,933 votes to 118,821.
PDP Demands Cancellation Of Borno, Yobe, Zamfara, Nasarawa Results
Meanwhile, the PDP has demanded the cancellation of the presidential election results announced by INEC in Borno, Yobe, Nasarawa and Zamfara States.
The party also called for fresh elections in the five northern states.
The request was made yesterday in Abuja by the deputy director-general (Administration) of the PDP Presidential Campaign Organisation, Barr. Tanimu Turaki.
At a press conference in Abuja, Turaki also demanded the restoration of party’s votes in Plateau, FCT, Nasarawa and Kogi States.
It further called for an immediate halt to the on-going collation of results by INEC, until data from the smart card readers on accreditation at the polling units were made available to all the parties in the election.
The PDP predicated its demand on available evidence to the effect that data from the card readers were reconfigured to suit the “manipulations, rigging and over-voting carried out during the election in some states by the APC.
Turaki, who also heads the PDP Campaign Organisation Legal Department, added that, “already the party’s national chairman, Prince Uche Secondus, has communicated the position of our party to the INEC chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu.
“We have evidence from the smart card reader accreditation data that what is being announced by INEC has been seriously tampered with and manipulated.
“In the meantime, we demand the immediate and outright cancellation of the presidential election results in Yobe, Zamfara, Nasarawa and Borno States as submitted by INEC presiding officers and asked for the conduct of fresh elections in these states.
“In Yobe, the total number of votes submitted as cast was more than the number of accredited voters. Whereas the number of accredited voters was 601, 056, the total votes cast was 775, 449.
“This is a clear case of over-voting which, by the provisions of the Electoral Act, renders the election null and void. In such instance, the law provides for another election on a day to be fixed by INEC.
“In Zamfara state, no actual voting took place and there was no single result sheet in any polling unit in the entire state. There was an arrest in Shinkafi local government area, where an APC member was caught thump-printing ballot papers inside his house.
“Results from the presiding officer from Zamfara State were concocted and allocated according to the wishes of the leadership of the APC and INEC.
“The PDP, therefore, demands the outright deletion of the results from Zamfara from INEC records and a conduct of free, fair and credible presidential election in the state.
“Also, in Borno State, there was no election but a figure writing exercise and allocation of results according to the whims and caprices of the APC leaders. We also demand the outright deletion of the results from Borno from INEC records and a conduct of free, fair and credible presidential election in the state.
“In Nasarawa State, the PDP demands the immediate restoration of our over 157, 000 lawful and valid votes which were unlawfully and arbitrarily cancelled by INEC and the announcement of the actual results from the field.
“Similarly, the PDP demands an immediate restoration of our over 79, 000 valid votes which were unlawfully cancelled by INEC in Kogi State and the announcement of the authentic results inclusive of the restored 79,000 votes,” Turaki said.
In the FCT, the PDP also demanded the restoration of 27,000 valid votes unlawfully and arbitrarily cancelled by INEC and a declaration of the authentic result, inclusive of the restored 27,000 votes.
In Plateau, the PDP demanded the immediate restoration of over its 30,000 lawful and valid votes, which it alleged, were unlawfully cancelled particularly in Jos North and the declaration of the genuine results as delivered at the polling units inclusive of the 30,000 restored votes.”
The PDP appealed to Nigerians to disregard the results until INEC provides the data from the smart card reader accreditation at the polling units; conducts fresh election in Borno, Yobe and Zamfara States as well as restore its votes in Plateau, the FCT, Kogi and Nasarawa States.
The PDP maintained that from the actual votes delivered at the polling units, which we all have, Nigerians clearly and unequivocally gave their mandate to Atiku Abubakar.