By Andrew Onyejuruuwa
After the presidential election that is marred with all manner of irregularities, President Muhammadu Buhari according to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has polled the highest number of votes in the February 23, 2019 Presidential election. Based on that result, the Chairman of INEC Prof. Mahmood Yakubu on midnight of Wednesday February 27, 2019 declared Buhari and returned him as the winner of the keenly contested poll.
Results from states as collated at the International Conference Centre ICC, Abuja put Buhari in the lead, as he polled a total 15, 191, 847 votes, while his main rival, Atiku Abubakar oplled 11, 212, 973 votes. Buhari who is the candidate of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) won in 19 States, while his challenger, Atiku – candidate of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) won in 17 States, including FCT, Abuja.
The difference between the winner, given the overall result is 3, 928, 868 votes. The Electoral Act provides that the poll will be deemed inconclusive if the voided votes are more than the difference between the winner and the first runner’s up. Also, the Electoral Law stipulates that for a candidate to be declared the winner, he must garner the total number of votes cast and record a spread – of not less than 25 per cent votes in at least two third of the States.
The President and his main rival have achieved this provision. Meanwhile, various political parties have complained about irregularities such as malfunctioning of the smart card readers, multiple ballot thump printing, alleged manipulation, regarding the re-configuration of smart card reader. In the meantime, Prof announced that the Certificate of Return would be issued to the winners later today, at 2 p.m.