Obinna Ogba, the senator representing Ebonyi Central District, has won the rescheduled governorship primary of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Ebonyi State.

The election was held on Sunday at the PDP secretariat in Abakaliki.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reported that accreditation of delegates and voting began around 8 p.m. on Sunday, and continued into the early hours of Monday.

Five hundred and thirteen delegates from the 171 wards in the state took part in the primary.

Chris Okolo, chairman of the electoral panel, said Mr Ogba polled 253 votes to emerge the winner.

According to him, Edwin Nwonu, a member of the House of Representatives representing Ishielu/Ezza North Federal Constituency, came second with 110 votes, while Sylvester Ogbaga, another member of the House of Representatives, came third with 63 votes.

Another aspirant, Fidelis Nwankwo, had 44 votes, while Chukwuma Nwazunku, who represents Ebonyi/Ohaukwu Federal Constituency, had six votes and Austin Edeze had three votes.

Paulinus Igwenwagu got two votes and Augustine Nwazunku had one vote.

Ifeanyochukwu Odii, who boycotted the polls, got one vote.

Two aspirants, Chris Usulor and Sunday Opoke, abstained from the primary.

The chairman of the panel said 14 votes were invalid.

“I, Mr Chris Okolo, having been conferred with the power to chair this panel hereby declare Senator Obinna Ogba winner, having polled the total highest number of valid votes and having met all the requirements for the election and he is hereby returned elected.

“The exercise was counted openly and witnessed by agents of the aspirants, leaders of the party present, as well as security agents,” Mr Okolo said.

Meanwhile, Ogba, in his acceptance speech, extended a hand of fellowship to the other contestants and declared his victory as “victory for the PDP”.

He thanked the delegates, party members and leaders of PDP for entrusting him with their mandate to fly the party’s flag in the 2023 governorship election in Ebonyi State.

He said: “I feel very happy; I thank the Almighty God who made the event very successful. I thank all our party members for finding me worthy to fly the flag of our great party, the PDP.

“To my fellow contestants, I extend my hand of fellowship to them; this is a sport and one person must win and I call on them to come and join me so that we can take our party to the highest level.”

Tochukwu Okorie, the PDP chairman in Ebonyi, in his remark, commended the party delegates for the peaceful and orderly conduct of the exercise.

He also commended the electoral panel for conducting a “seamless, peaceful, transparent and credible” exercise, and urged those who lost to team up to ensure victory for the party at the 2023 general elections.

The National Working Committee (NWC) of the PDP had in a letter, dated May 31 and addressed to the National Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), cancelled earlier primaries of the party in Ebonyi, including the governorship.

The primary conducted between May 28 and May 29 by a faction led by Silas Onu, had elected a different governorship candidate, but it was, however, boycotted by the Okorie faction.(NAN)

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