The candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Mr Garba Ahiya has won Saturday’s Takum 1 state constituency by-election into Taraba House of Assembly.
Newsmen report that the election was to fill the vacant seat of the late Hosea Ibi, member of the Assembly, who was kidnapped on Dec. 31, 2017 and murdered by his abductors in January 2018.
Dr Ayuba Kwada, the returning officer of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), announced the results on Saturday night in Takum.
Kwada said Ajiya of PDP won five of the six constituency’s ward with a total vote of 10,725 to emerge winner, while candidate of the All Progressive Congress (APC) Mr Atem Ansho polled a total vote of 3,268 with one ward.
He disclosed that nine political parties participated, while results from nine polling units in Chanchanji ward were cancelled due to irregularities.
According to him, “The total number of vote cast was 14,717; total number of valid votes was 14,337 while 380 votes were rejected.”
Reacting to the election result, Gov Darius Ishaku of Taraba, described the process as a litmus test for the 2019 general elections in the state.
He noted that the victory margin could have been wider if all those that turned out to exercise their franchise had their Permanent Voters Cards, (PVCs).
Ishaku, who commended the peaceful conduct of the election, restated the need for state police to permanently tackle insecurity.
“The country will be more efficient with pronounced secuty if it adopts state policing just like the United States of America where our democracy took it roots.”
The candidate of the APC has, however, rejected the outcome of the by-election.
He alleged that collation were still ongoing in some wards when hired thugs forced electoral officers to leave some polling units to other destinations and changed the results.
Ansho, however, said he was in talks with his lawyers for advice on the next course of action.