From Esther Akaa, Lafia
The women who had been peacefully protesting in Nasarawa State against affirmation of Governor Abdullahi Sule as the winner of the 2023 governorship election in the state by the Appeal Court have said that they are not foreigners, as claimed by the All Progressives Congress in the state.
The Voice earlier reported that APC had accused the women of being hired from neighbouring states by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to cause chaos in the guise of protesting against the judgement which nullified the ruling of the Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal that declared Dr David Ombugadu of the PDP as the winner of the election.
One of the women’s group leaders, Auta Cletus, while reacting to the accusation on Saturday in Lafia, said they would not end their protests until the PDP candidate David Ombugadu restores his mandate in the Supreme Court.
She said, “I am a widow. My husband died many years ago. I was born and brought up in Takpa-Uzi community in Lafia Local Government Area of the state. We are here today because our son, David Ombugadu who we voted for has been denied his election victory by desperate politicians in this state.
“As you can see, there are many widows here who are praying for him to succeed because he is the one we voted for during the last governorship election. We voted for him because we believe that he has the solution to our problems.
“I have children who are educated but they have no jobs because the present administration did not make jobs available for the people. I am shocked that the APC people could make such a statement that we are hired from other states. That assumption is incorrect because we are all indigenes of Nasarawa State advocating for the advancement of our dear state.”
While lamenting that the Appeal Court’s judgment fell short of the expectations of the people who massively voted for Ombugadu, she called on the Supreme Court judges to carefully observe the governorship election results in Gayam and Chiroma electoral wards in Lafia Local Government Area of the state.
“The total number of accredited voters in Gayam ward in Lafia LGA according to INEC was about 13,000, but INEC allocated 33,000 votes to only the APC. Secondly, in Chiroma ward of the same Lafia LGA, the number of accredited voters according to INEC’s record is 21,000, but INEC announced 59,000 votes solely for the APC.
“Seeing these kind of figures from the election is part of the reasons why we are motivated to keep coming out on a daily basis to seek for Justice on the matter. No one is sponsoring us to come out for the protest. The reason for our protest is because we want the right thing to be done.
“So, we are appealing to the Supreme Court judges to carefully look at the results of the Nasarawa State governorship election before delivering the judgement,” Auta Cletus added.
Also speaking, Helen Bature, said it was demeaning for the APC in the state to accuse them of being hired from other states to come over to Nasarawa for protest.
She said, “It is sad that the APC and supporters of the current administration could say such a thing to us. They should be aware that we are indigenes of the state. Most of us were born here in this state and we attended our schools here, so it is not good for anyone to just come up and say something untrue as that.
“The reason why we are here is because we want justice. We have cried enough. Our appeal to the Supreme Court is that justice should be done to the people of Nasarawa State who voted during the 2023 governorship election.”