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[BREAKING] EbonyiDecides2023: Victory party for APC candidate botched

The victory party organised for the All Progressives Congress governorship candidate in Ebonyi State for the 2023 polls, Francis Ogbonna Nwifuru, was Sunday evening abruptly postponed.

The party was organised at the instance of Governor David Umahi, whose party was cruising to victory on Sunday.

The postponement was as a result of the inability of the Independent National Electoral Commission to finally pronounce Nwifuru winner owing to some yet to be reconciled results, mainly from Ishielu Local Government Area of the State.

The party was scheduled to begin by 5pm, but neither the Governor nor the candidate showed up till around 7pm.

Stakeholders and jubilant APC supporters who filled the Ecumenical Centre Abakaliki, venue of the event, were taken aback as Nwifuru stepped in to announce the postponement of the event.

Addressing the crowd, Nwifuru expressed regrets over the development, adding that the essence of the event had not fully hatched.

He announced the postponement of the event till Monday, informing that INEC discontinued results collation at the State Collation Centre to reconvene 10 am Monday.

The information was received with mixed feelings by the crowd of party supporters and major stakeholders who were already in celebration mood.

Meanwhile, the Resident Electoral Commissioner for the State, Pauline Onyeka, had at 6.30pm, announced the discontinuation of results collation at the Commission headquarters in Abakaliki, owing to some irreconcilable figures from Ishielu LGA.

She noted that after communication with the Commission’s head office in Abuja, it became necessary to postpone result collation till Monday.

Onyeka explained: “Ishielu’s results have been uploaded in the IREV.

“They finished uploading the result 100 percent yesterday.

“Today, they complained about the result sheets and we gave them replacement results and they are still finding it difficult to get it right.

“I have called Abuja, and we are of the opinion that the Admin Secretary should host a review committee now.

“They are going to take it from what is contained in the INEC IREV and EC8A.

“They will go through the result sheet and come up with the results.

“Where it fails to tally, we will cancel the local government.

“We shall be meeting by 10am tomorrow.”

By the time of the announcement, Nwifuru was already leading in nine out of the 12 local government areas which results had been collated by INEC.

Ishielu was the only outstanding result to declare Nwifuru winner of the governorship election.