In the Kogi State polls held on November 11, the Social Democratic Party’s (SDP) candidate for governor, Murtala Ajaka, declared that he would not waste time in court contesting the election result of the All Progressives Congress’ (APC) Usman Ododo.
With 446,237 votes, Ododo defeated Social Democratic Party (SDP) candidate Murtala Ajaka, who received 259,052 votes, to be proclaimed the election’s victor by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC). 46,362 votes were cast for Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate Dino Melaye.
Ajaka claimed that the election was rigged in Ododo’s favour, citing claims of pre-filled ballot results in several regions of the state before to Saturday’s polling opening.
He made this known during an appearance on Channels TV’s The 2023 Verdict programme on Sunday night.
His words: “I have been around for the past 20 years. I know what it is. What am I going to court to do when the same INEC that did this is going to come as a witness to defend what they did? So it is a waste of time. Except the party people, because I’m hugely disappointed. If the INEC chairman allows this to stand, they are looking for trouble in Nigeria.
“You gave me assurances that the election would be transparent; you allowed me to waste my time, spend my money, mobilise my people, only for you to write the results. Even if I’m not sad about it, you expect my supporters to be happy. I assure you, if they allow this to stand as they are allowing in all the states now, they are calling for anarchy in this country.”
Speaking further, Ajaka called on the INEC chair, Prof Mahmood Yakubu, to investigate the officials used for the conduct of the election and stated that he doubts if elections will be held in the country in 2027.
He said, “With all due respect to the person of the INEC chairman, if they don’t do a checklist and investigate their officials that went to Kogi State and allow this to stand, I doubt if there will be an election in 2027. Because people will go into that election armed, and I fear Somalia will be a child’s play.
“If we knew it would be the same old music, we would have played along with that old music by inflating the results from my area,” he added.