By Noah Banjo
The Independent National Electoral Commission has declared the candidate of the All Progressives Congress, Biodun Oyebanji, the winner of the Ekiti State governorship election.
The Returning Officer for the election, Prof Kayode Adebowale, who is the Vice Chancellor, the University of Ibadan, announced the results.
Adebowale said, “Oyebanji, having scored the highest number of votes is hereby declared the winner and returned elected as the governor-elect of Ekiti State”
The APC scored 187,057 votes to defeat its closest rival, the SDP, which garnered 82,211 votes, the PDP, which got 67,457 votes and 13 other parties which participated in Saturday’s governorship election.
Out of the 360,753 votes cast, the total valid votes in the election were 351,865.
While the agent of SDP, Owoseeni Ajayi, did not sign the forms for the votes cast, the agent of the ADP, said, “Instead of having polling centres, what we have in Ekiti are vote-buying centres”.
Meanwhile, our correspondents who monitored the exercise across the state reported that in Ado-Ekiti, the state capital, residents trooped to the streets to celebrate the victory in the dead of the night. At the Government House in the Oke Ayoba area of the town, other APC governors, led by the state governor, Dr Kayode Fayemi, monitored the exercise.
Similarly, in Ikogosi-Ekiti, Ekiti West Local Government Area, where Oyebanji hails from, residents also began celebrating the victory of their kinsman at the poll.
Also in Ikere-Ekiti, where Oyebanji’s running mate, Mrs Monitade Afuye, hails from, residents also began celebration as the results were announced by the respective local government Returning Officers.
In different parts of the state also, some members of the ruling party celebrated the victory, describing it as well-deserved.
Our correspondents observed that prior to the announcement of the results at the collation centre, all the results from the 16 local government areas had been uploaded on the Result Viewing Portal of the Independent National Electoral Commission, known as IReV.