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Campaign coordinator: Binani being witch-hunted | Adamawa REC’s action in order

Campaign coordinator: Binani being witch-hunted | Adamawa REC’s action in order
April 26
09:40 2023

Aisha ‘Binani’ Dahiru, governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Adamawa, is being “victimised and witch-hunted”, says Vrati Nzonzo, her campaign coordinator.

On April 16, Hudu Yunusa-Ari, resident electoral officer of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), declared Binani as the winner of the election when all the results were yet to be collated.

The electoral umpire reversed his declaration and the exercise resumed days later. Ahmadu Fintiri, candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), was eventually declared the winner.

In the wake of the controversy, there were reports that the APC candidate gave INEC officials N2 billion to be announced as the winner.

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Speaking on Tuesday during a Channels Television programme, Nzonzo said a “very biased position” has been taken against Binani.

“As far as we are concerned, she is being witch-hunted, and she is being drowned using the media and other individuals that are out there to victimise her, maybe because she is a woman,” he said.

“We are proud of her and her achievement.”

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Commenting on the REC’s action, Nzonzo said: “It is not wrong… on the premise that he doesn’t want to allow a vacuum in the state, results must be announced.

“The information we got was that because of the way state government agents were hunting down electoral officers, people were running for safety. I’m not surprised that the returning officer disappeared.

“I’m not a staff of INEC but any right-thinking person knows that the responsibility to coordinate the activities of INEC in Adamawa lies with Hudu.

“Hudu’s action is okay. If he can announce the election as inconclusive, why won’t he announce the winner?

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“When he announced the first election as inconclusive, nobody said anything. Festus Okoye was not on national television to condemn it but when on the second turn, he announced Binani as the winner of the election, all hell let loose.

“Hudu has already made it clear to the best of my knowledge that considering the circumstances he found himself at that moment, he had to take responsibility and act.”

Based on the Electoral Act 2022, the responsibility for declaring the winner in a governorship election lies with the returning officer.

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