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Ajaokuta Reps Rerun: Hon. Idris bounces back, retains seat

 

Yesterday, Hon. Mohammed Lawal Idris joined in the winning streak of All Progressives Congress, as he defeated Peoples Democratic Party candidate in a Ajaokuta federal house of representatives rerun election with a wide margin.

In a landslide victory by the result announced by the Returning Officer, Prof. Rabiu Balarabe Idris had polled total votes of 13, 738, humbling his closest contestant, Mr. Aloysius Okino of Peoples Democratic party who scored a total of 9,176 votes.

Before the rerun, Lawal had 9, 040 while Okino had 9, 035 making the returned lawmaker leading with just five votes.

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In the rerun the APC candidate polled 4, 698 while that of the PDP polled 141; leading with 4, 557 votes.

In his response, he simply said, “I will best describe my emergence as victory for democracy and I dedicate this victory to God, my Governor, His Excellency, Governor Yahaya Bello and my good people of Ajaokuta. I am very impressed with the leadership of our great party, APC, and our supporters.

“I must salute the efforts of the administrator of Ajaokuta LGA, Hon. Mustapha Akaaba and the member representing Ajaokuta Constituency in the state assembly, Hon. Abdullahi Hassan Balogun, for standing tall to ensure the victory of the party.

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“When the verdict of the court came, we took it in good faith as true democrats. They all worked with me, did the necessary canvass and of course, pleading with our people to come out so as to reduce apathy. To the glory of God, we have prevailed.

“For the people of Ajaokuta, I pledge never to let you down. we will continue to do our best and do that which is good for our people. I will also urge you to support our Governor, His Excellency, Yahaya Bello and President Mohammadu Buhari. Believe me, in due course we shall be happier with the development that will come to our place. You are all aware of the resolve of the federal government with in concert with our Governor to look into a way to resuscitate the ‘Steel Mill’ coupled with other projects that will bring about development of our State and improve the living standard of our people.

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“Once again, I say thank you my people and also extend an olive branch to my brother, Okino Aloysius and others for us to join hands and uplift our people.”

Recall that Idris was declared winner of February 23, 2019 Ajaokuta federal constituency seat, after polling more votes than other contestants. At the tribunal, his election was upheld.

However, Peoples Democratic Party candidate, Okino pursed the case further at the Appeal court where his prayers were granted, thereby cancelling Idris victory.

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In its ruling the court of Appeal sitting in Abuja ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, to conduct rerun elections in 21 polling units in the federal constituency.

Business mogul turned politician reacting to the verdict said: “We are in democracy. If the court has ruled in that order, I am of APC and we believe in Rule of Law. We shall abide by the court verdict. All I know is that my people are with me. They love me and they know that I mean well. We shall go back and talk to our people. Insha Allah, I will still emerge.”

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With his emergence, it is a proof of his popularity with his people.

Meanwhile, Okino has been enmeshed in an age long rivalry with Hon. Idris following various challenges both politically and otherwise.

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