By Shuaib Sadiq/Kaduna
Alhaji Isah Ashiru, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governorship candidate in Kaduna has rejected the outcome of the election, which favours Governor Nasir El-Rufai.
The PDP candidate who lost to Gov. Nasiru El-Rufai, candidate of the All progressives Congress (APC), said he has substantial evidence showing that the election was manipulated.
Announcing the result on Monday in Kaduna, the State Returning Officer, Prof. Muhammed Yahuza Bello said, El-Rufai, the governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress, APC, scored 1,045,427 votes to emerge winner. Alhaji Isah Ashiru of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) scored 814,168 votes.
Ashiru called for outright cancellation of the results, alleging gross irregularities in some local government areas of the state.
According to him, reports obtained by his party agents across the state revealed that the elections were marred by a lot of irregularities.
“It is on the basis of these established irregularities that our party in a petition to the state Resident Electoral Commissioner of INEC rejected the results and called for its outright cancellation.
“It is important for you to note that available reports have shown that smart card readers were not used during the elections in a lot of polling units,” he said.
The PDP candidate listed areas affected by the alleged irregularities as Giwa, Birnin Gwari, Kaduna North, Igabi, Zaria, Lere and Ikara Local Government Areas.
“It is our firm belief that the non usage of the card readers which is a violation of the electoral guidelines have rendered the results from these areas invalid.
“Another issue of concern to our party was the clear militarisation of the electoral process in various part of the state,” he said.
Ashiru said the disparity between the number of votes obtained by the APC in the presidential elections and that of the governorship elections was another cause for concern.
“How could the people of Kaduna State be convinced the APC will earn more votes during the governorship elections than it got in the presidential elections,” he asked
INEC’s Resident Electoral Commissioner, Alhaji Kaugama Abdullahi has confirmed receiving a petition against the outcome of the governorship poll from the PDP.
Abdullahi told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that the PDP had requested to inspect the election materials used during the poll in the state.
He said the commission had already directed its legal department to take necessary actions on the petition since the request is within the law.