Makurdi - Former Minister of State for Trade and Industries, Dr Samuel Ortom of the All Progressive Congress (APC), has won the Benue governorship election held on Saturday.
Announcing the results on Monday in Makurdi, the Returning Officer for the state, Prof. Istifinus Dafwang, said Ortom polled 422,932 votes to beat seven other contestants.
The Labour Party, PDP, APC, APGA, NNPP, APA, ACPN and SDP contested in the Governorship and State Assembly elections.
The results showed that Ortoms's closest rival in the contest, Terhemen Tarzoor of the PDP scored 313,878 votes, while Caleb Abahnif of APGA had 649 votes, Boniface Umele of ACPN polled 1,431 votes.
Others were, Oglekwu Shadrack of APA, who polled 1,595 votes, William Ligom of the LP with 2,653, Helene Ode of NNPP scored 767 votes and Samuel Gar of SDP polled 589 votes.
The results, however, showed that the PDP would retain its dominance in the state legislature, having won a total of 15 seats as against 14 by the APC and one by the Labour Party.
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Reacting to the results, Prof Iyorwuese Hagher, who served as the Director General of Tarzoor Campaign Organization, congratulated the winner of the election.
He appealed to the people to support the newly elected governor to succeed in the task of rebuilding the state.
Hagher, however, expressed some misgivings in the manner the polls were held, but the party had accepted the result in the "spirit of greater Benue state.''
"We prefer to move forward and forget the indiscretions of the INEC returning officer,'' he added.
He promised that the PDP in the state would be strengthened, as it had "grown lean from divisive politics.''
The APC had won two out of the three senatorial seats and a majority of the federal constituencies in the state.