By Chinonso Alozie – Owerri
Tension has continued to soak the political atmosphere of Imo state, as the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, Sunday declared the All Progressives Congress, APC, as the winner of the Imo North bye-election, held on Saturday.
The Election Returning Officer, ERO, Hakeem Adikum, while announcing the winner, at INEC, office located along Port Harcourt road in Owerri, did not mention the name of the candidate of APC, that won the election.
He only said that, APC clinched victory by polling 36,811 votes while the PDP candidate, Emmanuel Okewulonu, got 31, 903 votes.
While the results showed that APC, won five local government areas out six, which included Ehime Mbano, Onuimo, Ihitte Uboama, Obowo, Isiala Mbano, the PDP, won only in Obowo local government area.
But on why a candidate was not announced, the Resident Electoral Commissioner, REC, Francis Ezeonu, relied on what he described as “Several court orders for and against Senator Ifeanyi Araraume and Frank Ibeziem both who are laying claim to the APC candidature.
However, it should be recalled that while an Appeal court sitting in Owerri, authenticated the candidature of Frank Ibeziem, another federal high in Abuja, was reported to have disqualified Ibeziem as the senatorial candidate of APC, on the grounds of certificate forgery.
At this point, tension is growing in both camps of Araraume and Ibeziem, as they continued to beseech the office of the INEC, to know whose name is in the list to be favoured as the next Imo North senator.
It was observed that there has been a sort of confusion over which camp could win the battle.