The Governor of Abia State, Okezie Ikpeazu, has congratulated the Labour Party (LP) governorship candidate in the state, Alex Otti, on his emergence as the governor-elect.
The spokesperson of the governor, Onyebuchi Ememanka, disclosed this in a statement on Wednesday night.
PREMIUM TIMES reported that Mr Otti was declared the winner of the governorship election in the state on Wednesday.
Mr Otti, the LP candidate, polled a total of 172,386 votes to defeat his closest rival and candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Okey Ahiwe, who garnered a total of 88,174 votes.
In his congratulatory message, Mr Ikpeazu noted that Mr Otti “fought a long battle over a very long period of time and deserves commendation for his staying power and resilience,” Mr Ememanka said.
“Since we have come to the logical end of this battle, it is appropriate to congratulate the winner, Dr Alex Otti on his hard fought victory. In every battle, there will always be a winner and in the spirit of sportsmanship and love for our state, the Governor-elect must see his victory as a higher call to service to the people of Abia State,” he said.
The governor hailed candidates of other political parties who participated in the exercise for their “doggedness,” adding that he is of the opinion that the governor-elect “should be given an enabling environment to run the affairs of state” from 29 May.
He advised the candidates who lost in the exercise “not to distract the incoming governor with court cases.”
“Having myself spent about three and half years in different courts and having experienced firsthand the distraction such cases can cause a leader, I appeal to every candidate in this election not to distract the incoming administration with court cases, so that they will settle down and deal with the very demanding business of governance.
“Let us break this negative trend of subjecting our governors to endless litigations and allow them to concentrate on providing good governance,” Mr Ikpeazu said.
The governor assured Mr Otti that he (Ikpeazu) would “put in place every necessary measure to ensure a seamless transition” for the governor-elect.
He commended residents of the state to coming out to cast their votes peacefully, urging them to accord the governor-elect the necessary support to enable his administration succeed.
The governor is a member of the PDP, the ruling party in the state.
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