* it is an exercise in futility – election panel, aspirant
The All Progressives Congress (APC) in Zamfara state has returned Alhaji Mukhtar Shehu Idris as winner of the last Wednesday’s botched governorship primary election in the state.
The party chairman in the state, Alhaji Lawali M. Liman, also declared Governor Abdulaziz Yari as winner of Zamfara West senatorial zone primary election in the state with 166,610 votes.
Alhaji Lawali said the state government-backed Alhaji Mukhtar Shehu Idris polled 310,380 votes, while Senator Kabiru Marafa came distant second with 54,607.
The other candidates garnered the votes as follows: Alhaji Mahmuda Aliyu Shinkafi 5,514 votes, deputy governor Alhaji Ibrahim Wakkala Muhammad 517 votes.
Others are Alhaji Sagir Hamidu Gusau 102 votes, Alhaji Aminu Sani Jaji 12,039 votes, Alhaji Abu Magaji 340 votes, Alhaji Dauda Lawal Dare 5,396 votes and Brigadier General Mansur Dan Ali rtd scored 292 votes.
“Therefore Alhaji Mukhtar Shehu Idris having scored the highest votes is hereby returned elected,” Alhaji Liman declared.
The National Working Committee of the party had announced the dissolution of the Alhaji Lawali M. Liman-led exco in the state.
Earlier, Governor Yari said they would still collate and declare the last Wednesday’s elections results even after it was cancelled by the then Abubakar A. Fari-led election committee in the state.
The last Wednesday’s election was cancelled midway by the committee after it was marred by widespread violence and alleged voters’ intimidation.
The election was rescheduled to last Sunday and it was not conducted again following irreconcilable differences between the state government-backed aspirant Alhaji Mukhtar Shehu Idris and the other eight aspirants known as group 8 on the other hand.
Yari said the APC governorship, national and state assemblies elections had to be concluded and results announced before 12:00 am Monday.
He urged the people of the state to remain calm and that the results for the elections would be announced before midnight.
“We can’t risk losing the contest in 2019. We are on a redline. By INEC’s guidelines any election held before midnight is null and void, therefore we can’t afford to loose the contest,” he said.
He then urged all party faithfuls to stay at the polling centres and vote candidate of their choice adding that the impasse would soon be over.
However, Daily Trust learnt that as Governor Yari was briefing newsmen on the development at 7:20 pm on Sunday, no voting material reached any polling centre and most of the centres were deserted by the voters.
However, the Major General Abubakar Mustapha Gana led committee said Zamfara APC’s declaration would not stand adding that there was no election in the state and they would write their report and submit to the national secretariat.
In the same vein, the campaign office of the one of the aspirants who is also the deputy governor of the state, Alhaji Ibrahim Wakkala Muhammad described the declaration as an exercise in futility adding that the it would not stand because party guidelines had been grossly violated.
The office said only the election committee sent by the national headquarters has the authority to declare results of the election not the party in the state.