Blessing Okorite, Port Harcourt
An exhibit video clip presented by the African Action Congress through its witness, a national Television staff, Osademe Joseph, declared Governor Nyesom Wike as the winner of the 2019 Governorship election in Rivers State.
Mr Osademe who was subpoenaed by the tribunal to present his evidence in court, told the State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal led by Justice Kingsley Orjiako, that he was one of the producers of the live broadcast of the Rivers State Governorship election results collation held on April 2 and 3, 2019, at the state headquarters of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, in Port Harcourt.
In the video clip presented in the court, INEC declared Governor Wike winner of the poll with 888264 votes ahead of the AAC Guber candidate Biokpomabo Festus Awara who came second in the list with 173859 votes.
The video also confirmed the collation and declaration of ObioAkpor LGA election results and non declaration of Gokana and Abua/Odual LGAs by INEC.
It would be recalled that Awara had on Saturday and Sunday sort to tender some purported election results to the tribunal, alleged that there was no declaration of result for Obio/Akpo and that results were declared for Abua/Odual and Gokana LGAs.
Meanwhile, Mr Nenye Kocha, AAC State collation agent, told the tribunal that the party only had 418 agents across the 4442 units in the state. He said as a new party, they were able to clear four House of Assembly candidates and one Governorship candidate for the March 9, 2019 election.
He revealed during cross examination by counsel for 2nd respondent (Wike), Emmanuel Ukala (SAN) that one Donatus Barikor from Gokana and Henry Iyala from Degema who witnessed for Awara as the party collation agents were imposters and not AAC members.
He reaffirmed that no result was declared for Gokana and Abua/Odual LGAs.
Kocha who was the star witness for AAC and also the party Secretary, told the court “We had just four house of Assembly candidates and one Governorship candidate. Out of the 32 Seats in the Assembly, we only had four candidates. No candidate for National Assembly. We had collation agents in only 418 polling units across the 4442 polling units in the state.
“No result was declared for Abua/Odual and Gokana LGAs as at the time of collation. INEC conducted the election in strict compliance of the INEC Law”.
Kocha who told the court that he will not dent his integrity because of his interest in politics said “Donatus Barikor for Gokana and Henry Iyala for Degema were not AAC party agents.
“This is the first time I am in politics, coming from industry I am in politics for integrity. APC adopted our Governorship candidate two days to the election.”
The suit was adjourned till Tuesday for continuation of cross examination of the AAC witnesses.