Why Akpabio, Mimiko, others claim Amaechi rigged Nigeria Governors Forum election

Godswill Akpabio
Godswill Akpabio confessed to rigging the 2007 senatorial primary elections in his state but will be a major player in the convention.

Mr. Amaechi won re-election as governors’ forum chairman.

More details have emerged as to why the Akwa Ibom State Governor, Godswill Akpabio; his Ondo State counterpart, Olusegun Mimiko, and some others claim the Nigeria Governors Forum election was rigged in favour of Governor Rotimi Amaechi of Rivers.

Shortly after the announcement of the result of the elections, which showed that Amaechi scored 19 votes, against 16 votes scored by his opponent and Governor of Plateau State, Jonah Jang; Mr. Akpabio addressed reporters rejecting the result, with the allegation that the election was rigged.

He claimed the ballot papers were not serialized and that Mr. Amaechi did not step down prior to the election.

In documents circulated by the Akwa Ibom governor, PREMIUM TIMES learnt that prior to the election, Mr. Akpabio and 18 other governors in attendance at a meeting of the Peoples Democratic Party governors had taken a resolution proclaiming their support for Mr. Jang as the new Chairman of the Forum. Curiously, the document was also signed by at least two opposition governors, Ibrahim Gaidam of Yobe (All Nigeria Peoples Party); and Olusegun Mimiko of Ondo State (Labour Party). Mr. Akpabio claimed it was inconceivable that after voting, the outcome would be in favour of Amaechi.

In the resolution of the 19 governors that Mr. Akpabio also presented before the NGF meeting, they stated that: “We the undersigned Governors of the Nigerian Governors’ Forum having taken cognizance of the state of the nation and the perception of the Nigerian people, do herby resolve as follows:

1. That we thank the out-going Chairman, His Excellency, Chief Rotimi Amaechi, Governor of Rivers State for his leadership and achievement.

2. That we strongly agree for a change of leadership of the Forum from May 2013 to May 2015.

3. We hereby, therefore elect His Excellency Jonah Jang of Plateau State as the new Chairman of the Forum.”

The signatories included Godswill Akpabio (Akwa Ibom); Ibrahim Dankwambo (Gombe); Serike Dickson (Bayelsa); Garba Umar (Taraba); Gabriel Suawan (Benue); Peter Obi (Anambra); Idris Wada (Kogi); Olusegun Mimiko (Ondo); Jonah Jang (Plateau); Mukhtar Yero (Kaduna); Sullivan Chime (Enugu); Martin Elechi (Ebonyi); Isa Yuguda (Bauchi); Emmanuel Uduaghan (Delta); T. A. Orji (Abia); Ibrahim Shema (Katsina); Ibrahim Gaidam (Yobe); Liyel Imoke (Cross River) and Abdul Ahmed (Kwara).

Mr. Amaechi insisted that despite the majority signatories (19 out of Nigeria’s 36 governors), the elections should still proceed; apparently knowing that not all the 19 would vote for Mr. Jang.

In his post-election speech, Mr. Amaechi thanked the governors for upholding democracy, reassuring the people of the commitment of the Forum under his leadership to support President Goodluck Jonathan “realize the development dream of all Nigerians by reducing tension, uncertainty and insecurity in our beloved country.”

“Today our democracy was tested and proven,” Amaechi said. “Democracy is about participation. The aim of democratic governance is for everyone to partake in winning. Today the governors have spoken with one voice reaffirming our faith in democratic governance as the hope of Nigeria’s future. I must thank my colleagues for their tenacity and determination to ensure the unity of the forum but more importantly of our nation.

“We remain committed to supporting our leader, the president and commander in chief of the armed forces of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, His Excellency, Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, to realize the development dream of all Nigerians by reducing tension, uncertainty and insecurity in our beloved country. We want to pledge our steadfastness and resolve working alongside Mr. President to better the lives of our people as we render transparent and accountable stewardship.

“Finally our thanks go to all those who have patiently endured these times especially our constituents and members of the fourth estate of the realm who have followed these elections with keen interest. We promise that we will not betray the confidence you have reposed in us.”

  • Uchenna O.

    Gov. Amaechi’s a true politician and Akpabio n Co should go n learn politics n stop making noise.

    • http://www.facebook.com/napas.pass Napas Pass

      These governors have a right to challenge the outcome if they believe in foul play.

      • Ik

        Which of the federal ministries do you work for?

      • osex

        Like u said dey hav a right to challenge d outcome but not d right to decleare demselves winner. Note dat pls

  • Sunday Adeleye

    Democracy has come to stay,those governors that reject the outcome should go and wait for there turn.

    • http://www.facebook.com/napas.pass Napas Pass

      The outcome is under challenge and so it cannot be set aside as you have requested. In a democracy, the matter must be looked into without rancour and the best solution proferred. Thanks.

  • Bala R

    HOW CAN JONA JANG KILL FULANIS,HAUSAS AND ANY MUSLIMS ON THE PLATEAU AND EXPECT VOTES FROM THEIR GOVS? WHO EVER NOMINATED HIM WANTED AMEACHI TO WIN SIMPLE.

    • http://www.facebook.com/napas.pass Napas Pass

      Obviously you are a person in favor of the Boko Haram. That aside, I disagree with your analysis of the situation and as an ordinary Nigerian who has nothing to gain by who wins or loses in the interest of democracy, I believe that the re-vote should take place.

      • Bala R

        You can say that a hundred times and you will be right a hundred times. In this country you are either anti Muslim or you are pro Boko in case you don’t know. You silly.

  • http://www.facebook.com/napas.pass Napas Pass

    It is obvious that there is controversy in who won as Chairman of the NGF. it is a simple one, they should redo the election since it is being challenged, and if Governor Amaechi believe that he won fair and square then he should not have any problem with a new election of which an independent body must supervise and monitor.

    • Mohammed

      Your are simply pathetic, Mr. Napas

    • Ayo

      Napas or wat is ur name….it’s obvious you are Jonathan apologist. If an election of just 35 governors cannot be held without rigging den dre is a serious problem! Only 35 people, haba! Of all credible people available dey used Jonah Jang! Are you rlly surprised Amaechi won??? C’mon you can’t be serious at all!!

    • Ik

      What is your real name?

    • God is God

      Mr Napas,
      The question you pple should be asking yourselves is who turned around and voted for Mr Amaechi after signing your document?
      Even among those 18 governors crying foul, 2 of them voted for the opposition.

  • Sowat

    Gov Akpobio shld accept defeat and stop ranting if d results had gone d other way he wldn’t hv said all he did.He is just so shocked dat inspite of their dubious manipulations,Ameachi still won.

  • Altold

    It is a shame that EVEN Governors cannot conduct a credible election of only 36 people in Nigeria; one wonders how they will be able to conduct any other elections for a larger number of people for that matter! This shows what happens when we waste public funds on some fraudulent activities and call them elections. It is also clear that “what money cannot buy more money CANNOT buy”

  • T.R

    the governors have just demonstrated how unfair and undemocratic Nigerian elections have always been. Only 36 people can not just conduct a free n fair, nice n sweet, justice-friendly, and favorable election of theirs. can we say theirs is a protype of the general election soon to come? thanks to Akpabio for the gut he has to voice out cheating-errors where it is necessary.