by Hilary Uguru | AP July 15 at 9:34 a.m.
WARRI, Nigeria – Nigeria's ruling party, the Congress of All Progressives, has narrowly won the race for the governor of Ekiti state in the south of the country, election officials announced Sunday.
The ruling Kayode Fayemi party won by a margin of less than 20,000 votes, the Nigerian election commission said. Fayemi won 197,459 votes to defeat his closest rival, Kolapo Olusola, of the Popular Democratic Party, which received 178,114 votes in the hotly contested poll.
By winning the governor's race, the ruling party has regained control of the Ekiti state. But some opposition parties quickly rejected the result, claiming that the election was marked by vote buying and voter intimidation.
"The process was characterized by the open alteration of the results, the brutalization of innocent citizens, the shameless cruelty and intimidation of our member agencies, in a brazen badault against democracy and a direct subversion of the will of the people" said Kola Ologbondiyan, national publicity secretary of the Popular Democratic Party.
Another opposition party, the Accord Party, accused both the ruling party and the Popular Democratic Party of buying votes. Officials of the ruling party paid 5,000 naira (about $ 17) per vote, while leaders of the Popular Democratic Party paid 4,000 naira (about $ 13) per vote, said Abiodun Aluko, candidate of the ruling Party of the Agreement.
to the distribution of the money that was made openly, "Aluko said in a statement.
Nigeria's police and electoral commission have strenuously refuted the opposition accusations that officials conspired to manipulate elections The electoral commission is committed to combat vote buying and voter intimidation, which has been widespread in Nigerian politics.
The Ekiti state, bastion of the main opposition party, has been ruled by the Democratic Party. Popular since 2014, when the All Progressives Congress lost its control in the governor survey.
The election was generally peaceful, apart from some outbreaks of violence experienced in some areas of the state.
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