At exactly 20.32hrs (8.32pm Nigerian time),on Monday, April 18, 2011, Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan was declared the President of Nigeria by the national Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), and returning officer for the Nigerian Presidential elections, Professor Attahiru Mohhamadu Jega.
Candidate Goodluck Jonathan of the PDP, polled a total of 22,495,187 to beat General Muhammadu Buhari of the CPC, who polled 12,214,853, Mallam Nuhu Ribadu of the ACN who got 2,079,151, and Alhaji Ibrahim Shekarau of the ANPP who got 917,012 .
The INEC National Chairman and returning officer for the Presidential elections declared President Goodluck Jonathan thus: “By the powers vested on me by the Constitution and the Electoral Act, I, Attahiru Muhammadu Jega hereby certify that I was returning officer for the presidential election.
“That Goodluck E. Jonathan having satisfied the conditions required, is hereby declared winner and returned Elected”.
According to the election data, Goodluck Jonathan of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) secured 25 percent of the total votes cast in 31 states of the federation namely; Abia, Adamawa, Akwa Ibom, Anambra, Bayelsa, Benue, Cross River, Delta, Ebonyi, Ekiti, Enugu, Gombe, Imo, Kebbi, Kaduna, Kogi, Kwara, Jigawa, Nasarawa, Lagos, Niger, Ogun, Ondo, Osun, Oyo, Plateau, Rivers, Sokoto, Taraba and the FCT.
As to be expected, the agents of the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC), the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) and even the All Nigerian Peoples Party (ANPP), did not sign the final result sheet. Only the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) agent signed, but this is purely inconsequential according to the electoral laws and does not in any way invalidate the declared results.
And although General Buhari of the CPC has said he would not go to Court to contest the results, the caveat he gave that his Party, the CPC has the right to challenge the results in Court is looking increasingly likely, as a petition has already been forwarded to INEC, rejecting the results and a chieftain of the CPC and former Nigeria Information Minister, Prince Tony Momoh has stated categorically that they would have to verify the results from most of the polling units, especially in the South East and South South and conduct a fresh counting of all those ballots, before they will endorse the declaration of Dr. Goodluck Jonatha as the rightful winner of the election.
But all that is elementary now as INEC has formally declared and pronounced Dr. Goodluck Ebele Azikiwe (Mainasara, Omoluabi) Jonathan as the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and the Third democratically elected President in the post-Military rule era of the country, after Chief Olusegun Obasanjo and the late Umaru Musa Yar’adua, respectively.
Congratulations Mr. President. Nigerians have spoken loudly and clearly. Now the transformation agenda of rebuilding a new Nigeria begins…