Ebonyi Speaker, Nwifuru thanks Umahi after clinching APC guber ticket


The Speaker of the Ebonyi House of Assembly, Chief Francis Nwifuru has won the All Progressives Congress (APC) gubernatorial primaries in the state.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Nwifuru polled 743 votes to defeat four other aspirants in the exercise conducted inside the Pa Ngele Oruta Stadium, Abakaliki.

Mrs Rosemary Ofoke came second in the exercise with 63 votes, Sen. Julius Ucha came third with 22, Chief Elias Mbam scored 10 votes and Chief Edward Nkwegu, eight votes.

Mr Emmanuel Adebayo, Chairman of the party’s committee for the primaries declared Nwifuru the winner and commended all the contestants for their mature conduct.

Adebayo announced that a total of 855 delegates were accredited for the exercise while the total votes cast was 854.

“The total number of valid votes was 846 while the invalid votes were eight.

“I am delighted over the peaceful conduct of the exercise as this shows that the party is united in the state.

“I thank the national body of the party for finding us worthy to conduct the exercise and the security agencies for providing a peaceful and secure atmosphere.

“I also thank officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) among other concerned stakeholders who monitored the exercise,” he said.

Nwifuru, in his remarks, thanked God for his emergence and Gov. David Umahi for his fatherly disposition and support.

“Umahi has been the instrument God uses to uplift me and I will forever remain indebted to him.

“He picked me from nothing and made me something including being the speaker of the state House of Assembly since 2015.

“I also thank all those who made this victory possible and this auspicious occasion is dedicated to all party faithful especially the youths,” he said.

NAN recalls that Nwifuru was endorsed by Umahi as his choice for the position but the decision was not accepted by some party faithful.

The primary was monitored by representatives of the INEC in the state.

The situation led to the aggrieved members holding parallel primaries including that of the gubernatorial position.