The candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Mrs Abbey Ukpukpen, has won the Obudu State Constituency bye-election in Cross River State, southern Nigeria.
The bye-election was to fill the vacant seat of a former member of the Cross River House of Assembly, Steven Ukpukpen, who died recently.
Other political parties that participated in the bye-election included the All Progressive Congress, APC with Bendebel Ishamali as candidate; John Agwupuye was flag bearer of the African Democratic Congress, ADC and Clement Awafang rode on the wings of Mega Party of Nigeria, MPN.
Voice of Nigeria gathered that the PDP candidate, Mrs. Ukpukpen, wife of the deceased former legislator, polled 12, 712 votes to clinch the seat.
The APC candidate, Bendebel Ishamali got 4, 345 votes; Clement Awafang of MPN had 132 votes, while the ADC flag bearer, John Agwupuye, scored 114 votes.
According to the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, Obudu Local Government Area has69, 908 registered voters of which only 18, 180 people were accredited to vote.
However, the total number of votes cast was 17, 910 of which 17, 303 votes were valid and 607 rejected.
One election observer, who is also from Obudu, Mr. Peter Inyali told Voice of Nigeria that there was voter apathy as some of those who turned out for the exercise refused to cast votes without inducement.
The observer urged INEC to intensify its voter education campaigns and political parties to seek credible candidates to lead the people.
“I will suggest that INEC increase its voter education campaigns to make the people understand that their votes count. The political parties on their part should know that it is no longer business as usual. The people are not happy with the status quo. The must present people of integrity for elections”, suggested Inyali.
Another public analyst, Mr. Gill Nsa, who was at Obudu for the bye-election commended INEC for commencing the exercise early and taking measures to ensure peaceful conduct.
Nsa also applauded the Nigeria Police Force for stepping up to the challenge of ensuring peace throughout the duration of the exercise.
“The security arrangement was good. All the polling units I went to had adequate security presence and there was no violence although there was a bit of tension in areas where two or more political parties seem to have greater following”, he added.