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EDO POLL: I was optimistic of APC winning, don’t know what happened —El-Rufai

Traders deny purchasing nomination form for Gov El Rufai

The governor of Kaduna State, Nasir El-Rufai on Monday expressed surprise that Governor Godwin Obaseki of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) won the Saturday governorship election in Edo State.

El-Rufai, who spoke when he appeared on Channels Television programme, Sunrise Daily, said that polls had indicated that his party, the All Progressives Congress (APC), was going to win the election.

“We (APC) would have loved to win. Quite frankly I was optimistic.

“Up to three weeks ago, the polls indicated that we were going to win. I don’t know what happened in the last two, three weeks of the campaign.

“As you know, a large number of voters make up their minds in the last two weeks of election. Many voters decide, no matter what happens, this is how I am voting. But most people want to wait and watch and make up their minds in the last two weeks.

“Three weeks ago, the polls clearly showed that APC was going to win, but the results came out differently from what we expected,” El-Rufai said.

On President Muhammadu Buhari’s position for free and fair poll in Edo and the conduct of the election on Saturday, El-Rufai said:

READ ALSO: Edo election a ‘loud lesson’ to political godfathers – PDP

“The election was reasonably decent. We were all worried about violence; there was very little violence or none at all. So Obaseki has won, that’s it. You can’t go into an election without adverting your mind to the possibility of losing.

“And one thing President Muhammadu Buhari’s government has always done is to say that there must be free and fair election and the people’s choice must prevail.

“And the President has never used what is called Federal Might that other governments have used in the past to steal elections. We always insist that everyone should go and pitch to the people and may the best man win. And we can live with it.”

In the result of the Saturday election announced on Sunday by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Obaseki polled a total vote of 307,955 to defeat Osagie Ize-Iyamu of the APC, who got 223,619 votes.

Poll conducted by Ripples Nigeria ahead of the election had suggested Obaseki would win the poll.

The poll which attracted 7,129 votes saw Obaseki received 3,368 votes representing 47.2 percent, while Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu got 3,351 votes, representing 47.0 percent of the total votes.

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