By Patrick Obia
Professor Zana Akpagu has emerged the All Progressive Congrass, (APC) candidate in the October 31, 2020 Cross River Northern Senatorial District Bye-election.
Akpagu, who is already on leave as his tenure as the Vice Chancellor of the University of Calabar winds down in November, was declared the flag bearer in primaries conducted Friday in the five local government areas of northern Cross River.
He scored over two thirds of the valid votes cast in Yala, Ogoja, Bekwarra, Obudu and Obanliku Local Government Areas despite conflicting reports from the direct congresses conducted in the 54 wards that make up the district.
In another twist to the plot, they are claims that a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Joe Agi emerged winner even though the votes he polled were not declared.
However, the returning officer, Barrister Lazarus Undie who declared Akpagu winner said that: “Based on what we have declared here, we state that Professor Zana Akpagu, having scored the highest number of votes in this contest is the winner of the APC Senatorial primary election.”
The result was announced in the presence of Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, representative, Mr Asuquo Afia who observed the conduct of the election.
Other aspirants include a former guber candidate of the APC, Odey Ochicha; former guber aspirant in the Peoples’ Democratic Party, Fidelis Egoro and Mr. Henry Odey.
Breakdown of aspirants and votes scored:
Joe Agi……………….. 12,813
Odey Ochicha…………… 1,612
Henry Odey ……………. 239
Fidelis Egoro …………. 27