From Adanna Nnamani, Abuja

Alex Otti, the candidate of the Labour Party (LP) for the gubernatorial election in Abia State, has said that his victory in the polls held on Saturday cannot be overturned by any amount of manipulation.

Speaking at a press conference in Abuja, Otti stressed that his lead in the polls was significant, with over 171,000 votes from 16 local governments, compared to his closest rival, Okey Ahiwe of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), who trailed with about 80,000 votes.

Otti called on the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to reject any results that conflict with the data on the Bimodal Voter Authentication System (BVAS), claiming that the PDP had fabricated some figures from Obingwa council in an attempt to overturn his lead.

“The votes the Labour Party has got out of the 16 local governments is over 171,000. That of PDP is less than 80,000. So how will you flip and dice it?” Otti asked.

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He added that the fact that there are only 30,000 registered voters in Obingwa, despite the LP’s comfortable lead in the race, cannot influence the outcome of the election for the party.

Otti praised INEC for its use of the BVAS system, which he said had “demystified” Obingwa Local Government in Abia State. He also called on his supporters and the people of Abia State to remain calm and wait for INEC to review the results while urging the electoral umpire to adhere to the law in announcing the election results.

“The other important thing is that we are also thanking INEC, like we have always said the BVAS is a game changer, particularly if there is the will to use it. What has happened this time around is that the BVAS has demystified Obingwa Local Government in Abia State,” Otti said.

He thanked his co-contenders who called to congratulate him on his “victory” and urged INEC to announce the election results. Otti insisted that only BVAS results in accordance with section 47 of the Electoral Act are valid and demanded that INEC adheres to the law.