The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) declared the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) winner after he polled 473,933 votes ahead of his closest rival and candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Titus Uba, who scored 223, 913.
INEC’s Returning Officer in the state and Vice Chancellor of the Federal University of Technology, Minna, Faruq Kuta, announced the result on Monday, March 20.
Giving the breakdown of the votes, Kuta said the valid votes stood at 756,903, while the rejected votes were: 11,499. The total votes cast were: 768,402.
Citing section 24(1) of the Electoral Act (2022) and INEC Guidelines for the election, the State Returning Officer declared Mr Alia as the winner of the 2023 Benue State governorship election.
The margin of win is 250,020 votes based on the total number of votes collated from 22 out of the 23 local government areas of Benue State.
The governorship and state parliamentary election in Kwande Local Government Area was shifted to Tuesday, 21 March, due to printing errors in ballot papers that were discovered during the Saturday election.
Kwande LGA has a total number of Permanent Voters Cards (PVCs) of 156,826, representing 91 percent of 172,293 registered voters.
Therefore, with the margin of lead put at 250,020 votes above the number of PVCs collected in the affected areas which stands at 156,826, Alia was declared the winner by the electoral umpire.
In a related development, INEC’s Returning Officer in Borno State and Vice Chancellor of Federal University, Wukari, Taraba State, Jude Tsammani Rabo, has declared Babagana Umara Zulum of the APC as the winner of the governorship election in the state after polled 545,543 votes.
Zulum polled the majority votes in all the 27 local government areas of the state to emerge as the winner of the contest that earned him a second term of four years.
A total of 650, 533 persons were accredited across the state out of which 633, 646 were declared as the total valid votes.
Zulum earned his second term with a lower voter endorsement rate from the electorate despite his widely hailed achievements in the last three years and nine months. He had in 2019 polled 1,175, 440 votes as against the 545,543 votes he scored in the 2023 election.