By Emmanuel Oloniruha
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has congratulated Gov. Nyesom Wike of Rivers on his victory in the just-concluded governorship election in the state.
The governor was declared winner of the poll by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on Wednesday in Lagos after a resumed collation of ballots of the poll held across the country on March 9.
Collation of the votes was suspended by INEC, which cited violence and other electoral irregularities during the election in the state, as reason for the action.
INEC declared that Wike won the election with 886,264 votes, while his opponent, Mr Biokpomabo Awara, of African Alliance Congress (AAC) trailed with 173,859 votes.
The PDP in a statement signed by its National Publicity Secretary, Mr Kola Ologbondiyan,
described Wike’s re-election as “victory for the people of Rivers and triumph of good over evil.”
Ologbondiyan said that Wike’s record 700,000 votes margin of victory “speaks volume of the resilience of the people of the state in the face of intimidations, harassment and manipulations by oppressive forces”.
He said that the victory reinforced the confidence of the people in the resoluteness of asserting their democratic choice of leadership as well as standing in defence of their mandate to the end.
The party’s spokesman added that the victory also demonstrated that the will of the people would always prevail against every form of suppression.
He said that All Progressives Congress (APC) wanted to forcefully take over control of the state against the wish of the people.
“The party salutes and venerates all compatriots who were killed by agents of the oppressors during the election. These compatriots did not die in vain and those who shed their innocent blood will surely be
brought to book.
“The PDP commends Wike, the people of Rivers and all lovers of democracy across the board for standing firm until the end to hand this disgraceful defeat to the enemies of the people.”
Ologbondiyan also congratulated all PDP candidates, who won elections at all levels across the country.
He assured those pursuing their mandates at the tribunals that the party was fully behind them, “given that they all have water tight cases at the courts”.
On his part, the Presidential candidate of the party in the just concluded elections, Atiku Abubakar also congratulated Wike on his ‘well-deserved’ victory.
Abubakar wrote on his twitter handle @atiku: “Congratulations Governor Nyesom Wike. It gives me much pleasure to see a political force such as yourself, overcome the anti-democratic forces of dictatorship and oppression. I am sure you will continue the pattern of good works for which you have become renowned. -AA
Congratulations Governor Nyesom Wike. It gives me much pleasure to see a political force such as yourself, overcome the anti-democratic forces of dictatorship and oppression. I am sure you will continue the pattern of good works for which you have become renowned. -AA https://t.co/fTNzWKi5sq
— Atiku Abubakar (@atiku) April 3, 2019
Similarly, PDP National Chairman, Mr Uche Secondus, commended the resilience of party members across the country, particularly the elected ones, for extraordinary show of capacity to resist and withstand brutality, blatant intimidation, harassment and political terrorism.
In a statement issued by his Media Aide, Mr Ike Abonyi, the chairman said that PDP was proud of all its flag bearers and their conduct during and after the elections.
“By your peaceful conduct in the face of provocations, you have demonstrated truly that democracy is in your DNA and this we will continue to exhibit until all non-democrats pretending to be one are flushed out of our polity.”
Secondus said that the victorious PDP flag-bearers did not only contest with All Progressives Congress (APC), but with some INEC and military personnel allegedly compromised allegedly compromised.
He said that the introduction of inconclusive and suspension of polling in the country’s electoral process was ostensibly to aide APC to victory through supplementary balloting.
Secondus said that the APC, however, could not achieve it aim in Rivers, Bauchi, Adamawa, Sokoto and Benue because of the doggedness of committed democrats in the PDP.
He particularly commended PDP governors for their re-election which, according to him, revealed their overwhelming performances in the last four years in their various states.
“From 11 states when we started this journey in December, 2017 to 13 before the election and now, 15, with a very high hope of victory coming our way in five other states of Osun, Kaduna, Zamfara, Kano and Nasarawa.”
Secondus said that the strategic spread of the PDP victories spoke volume of the character and strength of the party as the only true national platform in the country.