From Henry Ibya, Makurdi
The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, in Benue State has presented certificates of return to the Benue governor-elect, Reverend Father Hyacinth Alia, his deputy Dr Sam Ode and all House of Assemly members- elect in the state.
Making the presentation at a ceremony in Makurdi, Wednesday, INEC federal commissioner in charge of voter education and publicity Barr Festus Okoye said the ceremony was done in fulfilment of the constitutional requirements that winners of governorship and State Assembly members- elect be given their certificates of return within 14 days from the day of election.
” Section 72 sub sec.1 of the electoral act has made it mandatory that INEC issue a sealed certificate of return to every person who is elected as governor, deputy governor and member of the State House of Assembly” Okoye told the people, adding that any elected person absent during the presentation would collect at INEC headquarters Abuja.
He advised that as the elections are over and certificates of return presented to winners,those elected should see Benue as their constituency in order to deliver good governance to the people.
The state resident electoral commissioner for Benue Prof Sam Egwu who performed a similar function on members of the State House of Assembly- elects, congratulated them for their victory at the polls and pray God to give them the wisdom to address the yearnings and aspirations of Benue people in a manner that would bring smiles on the faces of the masses.
He equally reminded them that the real politics would start after May 29 when they would be inaugurated in office and advised the winners to seek reconciliation and immediately settle down for good governance as well as to advance the public interest.
Responding on behalf of his deputy Sam Ode and other elected officials,the governor elect, Reverend Father Hyacinth Alia expressed appreciation to God, and the people for giving him the mandate to serve as governor.
The governor elect promised to be faithful and loyal to the people assuring that his administration would make a new Benue possible and expressed optimism that the new state Assembly would make laws that would promote peace and facilitate economic growth of the state.
He equally expressed determination to ensure that Democratic dividends reach out to the masses who he said have reposed in him and commended Benue people, party leadership and the entire masses for the confidence reposed in him and his deputy Dr Sam Ode, promising that the honour would not be taken for granted.