Story by Elizabeth Vincent yenagoa

The All Progressives Congress (APC), has refused to accept the final result of the Bayelsa State gubernatorial poll, in which the Independent National Electoral Commission declared the incumbent governor and candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Douye Diri, winner, on Monday.

Mr Dennis Otiotio, APC party agent, who stated this in an interview with newsmen after the INEC State Returning Officer, Prof Kuta Farouq, announced Diri as the winner of the polls, refused to sign the results sheets.

Otiotio noted that the APC would have won the governorship election if over 84,000 votes scored by the party in the field were not allegedly voided by the commission.

He accused the electoral body of conniving with the ruling PDP to cancel votes polled by the opposition APC.

He said, “Over 84, 000 votes scored by the APC in Nembe and Southern Ijaw were cancelled. So we will not be signing this result. In Nembe over 29,000 votes that the l APC scored were cancelled. In Southern Ijaw, over 54,000 votes that the APC scored were cancelled.

“If you add the total cancelled votes that the APC scored which were about 84, 806 votes, if you add it to what the party scored here (at the collation centre), APC clearly won the election.

“But it is clear that INEC has colluded, connived with the PDP to cancel (it) here in this INEC office, not on the field. The votes were brought from Forms EC8A and EC8B down here, and at this INEC office here, they decided to cancel over 84,000 votes scored by the APC.

“It is unprecedented, it has never happened anywhere and we are totally rejecting this result.”

Otiotio, who is also the state chairman of the APC, said the party had already written the necessary petition to challenge the collation process.

While responding to a question on what action the party would take, he said, “Well, the Electoral Act allows INEC to review the results within seven days, and we have written the necessary petition which we have delivered, believing that INEC in good conscience, will look at our petition and deal with it accordingly.”

Diri polled 175,196 to defeat his closest rival, Timipre Sylva of the APC, who garnered 110,108 votes while the Labour Party polled 905 votes.

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