The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has declared the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate, Douye Diri, the winner of the November 16 governorship election held in Bayelsa State.
This is coming after the Supreme Court sacked David Lyon of the All Progressives Congress (APC) on Thursday barely 24hours to his inauguration as governor. He was sacked on the ground that his deputy, Biobarakuma Degi-Eremieoyo, had presented a forged certificate to INEC.
The INEC Chairman, Prof Mahmood Yakubu, made the declaration at a press conference held at INEC headquarters on Friday, stating that the new governor-elect, Diri, would be given his certificate of return in compliance with the order of the Supreme Court.
He explained that the certificate of return would be granted to him as by the electoral body as soon as he comes for it.
Prof Yakubu said, ”Consequently, Senator Douye Diri and Senator Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo of the PDP are hereby declared winners and elected the governor and deputy governor of Bayelsa.
”The commission is aware that the tenure of the incumbent governor of Bayelsa ends at midnight today, Friday, 14th February 2020. Therefore, in fulfilment of Section 75 of the Electoral Act, 2010 (as amended), the certificates of return to the governor and deputy governor-elect will be presented to them immediately as ordered by the supreme court.”
Recall that Diri came second in the governorship election held on November 16, 2019, in the state.
Meanwhile, Prof Yakubu clarified that his commission had reviewed the apex court judgment and found that the PDP’s candidate scored the second-highest lawful votes.
He added that the PDP met the constitutional requirement of 25 per cent lawful votes in 2/3 of the 8 local government areas in Bayelsa.
Hence, it was gathered that Diri would be presented with the Certificate of return at the commission’s headquarters today.