Eko Hot Blog reports that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has declared Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate in the Bayelsa State Governorship Election, Governor Duoye winner of the Saturday’s governorship election in the state.
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate fought off his All Progressives Congress (APC) counterpart Timipre Sylva in a fiercely contested exercise in the oil-rich state.
The Governor won six local government areas to win re-election while his closest rival, Timipre Sylva of the All Progressives Congress (APC) won two local government areas.
Diri, who came into power in 2020, got a total of 175,196 votes while Sylva polled 110,108 votes. The figures meant the PDP flagbearer beat his closest rival by 65,088 votes.
The Labour Party (LP) scored a total of 905 to come a distant third.
While 18 candidates vied for the post, Sylva was Diri’s main contender. The immediate past Minister of State for Petroleum was contesting to return as the governor of the South-South state.
He first became a governor from May 2007 to April 2008. Sylva returned as the leader of the state between May 2008 and January 2012.
But his third attempt to become the governor of Bayelsa State was full of twist and turns. About one month before the election, the Federal High Court in Abuja disqualified him from the contest, citing a breach of the 1999 Constitution if he won.
According to Justice Okorowo, since Sylva has served twice and five years as governor of the state, he would breach the 1999 constitution as amended if allowed to contest again.
The judge also declared that Sylva was not qualified to run in the November poll because if he wins and is sworn in, he would spend more than eight years in office as governor of the state.
In the wake of the ruling, INEC delisted him as a contestant for the exercise. But APC and Sylva challenged the judgment with the Appeal Court on October 31, 2023 later reversing Sylva’s disqualification for the poll.
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