Yemi Osinbajo, vice president, believes that it’s impossible for former Akwa Ibom state governor, Godswill Akpabio, to have lost his re-election bid for the Akwa-Ibom North-West senatorial district.
Akpabio lost the February election in controversial fashion to Chris Ekpenyong, a former deputy governor, of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
While representing President Muhammadu Buhari at a town hall meeting with elders and stakeholders of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Uyo, the Akwa Ibom capital, on Monday, March 4, 2019, Osinbajo said Akpabio was robbed of the votes of the people.
He urged APC supporters to not be discouraged and troop out to vote again in the March 9 Governorship and State House of Assembly elections.
He said, “What happened on February 23 was robbery. The votes of the people were stolen but we are not deterred. The president sent me to thank you today. We are going to make sure that everything that was stolen on the February 23 would be restored.
“It is not possible that Senator Godswill Akpabio lost. We are in no doubt that Senator Akpabio is the elected senator of Akwa Ibom North West senatorial district. I and Adams Oshiomhole, the National Chairman of the party, have been in the opposition for long and we cannot be defeated anymore.
“Everyone of you should go out to vote on Saturday and defend your votes; we cannot be cheated. Not only you, but tell your neighbours to vote for Obong Nsima Ekere and all APC candidates. Wait for your votes to be counted. It is the duty of the federal government to provide security and we will do that. We will recover every one of our votes.”
Akpabio has already secured an order from an Abuja division of the Federal High Court to stop the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) from issuing a Certificate of Return to Ekpenyong.
Justice Valentine Ashi last week ordered INEC to stay further action in respect of the February 23 election pending the determination of its jurisdiction to entertain the suit.
Akpabio has insisted that he was cheated by INEC and has vowed to fight for his mandate and be declared a winner.
Akpabio was Akwa Ibom governor between 2007 and 2015 before he was elected to the Senate, all on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) whom he dramatically dumped last year for the ruling APC.