The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has declared Governor Hope Uzodimma, representing the All Progressives Congress (APC), the winner of the November 11, 2023, gubernatorial election in the state.
The state’s returning officer, Prof. Abayomi Fashina, and also the Vice Chancellor of the Federal University, Oye Ekiti, officially announced Uzodimma’s re-election at 10 a.m. on Sunday, following more than eight hours of collation of local government results.
In his declaration, Prof. Fashina stated, “Hope Uzodimma of APC, having satisfied the law, is hereby returned elected.”
Uzodimma had initially assumed the position of Imo State governor in January 2020 after the Supreme Court nullified the election of Emeka Ihedioha of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). Despite garnering political adversaries in the process, Uzodimma successfully sought re-election in the recent poll, securing victories across all 27 local government areas in the state.
In a landslide victory, Uzodimma outpaced his closest rivals, Samuel Anyanwu of the PDP and Nneji Achonu of the Labour Party (LP), as well as other contenders from various parties, including Jack Ogunewe of the Action Alliance (AA). The APC candidate secured a total of 540,308 votes, overshadowing Anyanwu with 71,503 votes and Achonu with 64,081.
The collation process, spanning eight hours from 2:30 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. on Sunday, was not without controversy. Opposition party agents raised objections, alleging discrepancies between the results presented at the state collation centre and those uploaded on the Result Viewing Portal of the commission. Despite protests, the returning officer pressed on with the collation.