The 13 Big Upsets in Nigeria’s 2023 Elections

The 2023 presidential and National Assembly elections were keenly contested by 18 political parties, among which include the ruling All Progressives Congress, the opposition Peoples Democratic Party, the Labour Party, and the New Nigeria Peoples Party and 14 others.

In the early hours of Wednesday, March 1, the Independent National Electoral Commission declared Asiwaju Bola Tinubu of the APC as the winner of the February 25 presidential election.

Tinubu, a former Lagos State governor, was declared the President-elect after the 70-year-old polled 8,794,726 votes to win the 2023 election ahead of other contenders — the PDP candidate, Atiku Abubakar; the LP candidate, Peter Obi; and the NNPP candidate, Rabiu Kwankwaso.

Amid Tinubu’s victory, last Saturday elections recorded some big upsets that redrew Nigeria’s political landscape.

1. Obi floors Tinubu in Lagos

Obi’s Labour Party floored Bola Tinubu in Lagos State. That’s the first in over two decades the Lion of Bourdillion could suffer such an electoral loss in his well-guarded political den since 1999. Having served as a two-term governor in the state between 1999 and 2007 and a Senator for Lagos West during the brief Third Republic, many pro-Tinubu supporters regard him as the “builder of Lagos.”

Many had expected Tinubu to win Lagos at the polls, being his touted stronghold.

However, even despite having a sitting governor under the APC, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, Obi floored the ‘Jagaban of Borgu’ in Lagos.

Based on the collation of results at the INEC collation centre in Yaba, LP won nine local government areas of the state.

The LGAs are Ajeromi-Ifelodun, Amuwo-Odofin, Eti-Osa, Ikeja, Kosofe, Oshodi-Isolo, Somolu, Ojo and Alimosho.

It polled a total of 575,735 votes while Tinubu’s APC garnered a total of 573,001 votes, which was however, a close margin.

Atiku had 75,750 votes while Kwankwaso had 88,442 votes.

2. APC chair, Adamu, loses polling unit to LP

The National Chairman of the APC, Abdullahi Adamu, lost his polling unit to the Labour Party.

The APC national chair cast his vote at Angwarimi Ward, GRA A1, LERCEST Office in Keffi, Nasarawa State.

In the presidential poll result, the LP presidential candidate polled 132 votes while the APC came second with 85 votes.

3. PDP demystifies El-Rufai in Kaduna

Kaduna State Governor Nasir El-Rufai of the APC, was demystified by the PDP as Atiku emerged winner of the Saturday presidential election in the state.

Atiku of the PDP garnered 554,360 votes to beat Tinubu of the APC, who got 399,293 votes to come second while the Labour Party polled 294,494 votes to claim third position.

El-Rufai has been the governor of the state since 2015 under the APC. In the National Assembly election, the APC lost the three senatorial seats to the PDP.

4. Ayade loses senatorial election in Cross River

Governor Ben Ayade lost his bid to return to the Senate following his defeat by the incumbent senator representing Cross River North, Jarigbe Agom-Jarigbe.

Ayade, who was in the Senate between 2011 and 2015, lost the election with 56,595 votes against Agom-Jarigbe of the PDP who scored 76,145 votes.

Agom-Jarigbe, a two-time member of the House of Representatives, was elected into the Senate through a bye-election in September 2021 following the death of Dr Rose Okoh.

5. Benue gov Ortom loses senatorial election to ex-aide

The Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom, lost the senatorial election to the APC candidate, Titus Zam. Zam was a Special Adviser on Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs to Ortom until the governor defected to the PDP in 2018. Zam, a strong disciple of the former governor of the state and Minister of Special Duties and Intergovernmental Affairs, George Akume, polled 143,151 votes to defeat Ortom who scored 106,882 while the LP candidate, Mike Gbillah, scored 51,950.

Ortom is one of the aggrieved five PDP governors called the G-5 who refused to campaign for the party’s presidential candidate over what they described as unfair representation in the leadership hierarchy of the party. Instead, Ortom backed Obi of the LP in the election.

6. Abaribe defeats Gov Ikpeazu in Abia South senatorial race

The Abia State Governor, Okezie Ikpeazu, lost the Abia South senatorial district election to the candidate of the All Progressives Grand Alliance, Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe.

Abaribe polled a total of 49,693 votes to defeat his closest rival and the candidate of the Labour Party, Chinedu Onyeizu, who got 43,903 votes while Ikpeazu of the PDP polled 28,422 votes. Like Ortom of Benue State, Ikpeazu is also one of the G-5 governors.

7. Aliero defeats Kebbi gov in senatorial race

The Governor of Kebbi State, Atiku Bagudu, lost his senatorial bid to Senator Adamu Aliero of the PDP.

Aliero scored 126,588 votes to defeat Bagudu, who polled 92,389 votes.

8. Gov Ishaku loses Taraba South senatorial seat to APC’s Jimkuta

The Taraba State Governor,  Darius Ishaku, lost the election for the Taraba South senatorial district to the candidate of the All Progressives Congress, David Jimkuta.

Declaring the results of the election on Monday in Wukari, the INEC returning officer, Prof. Solomon Adeyeye, said Jimkuta polled 85,415 votes to defeat Governor Ishaku of the PDP who polled 45,708 votes.

9. Natasha loses Kogi central to APC

In Kogi State, INEC declared Abubakar Sadiku-Ohere of the APC as winner of the February 25 election for Kogi Central Senatorial District.

Sadiku-Ohere beat the candidate of the PDP, Natasha Akpoti-Uduaghan, to emerge winner of the keenly contested election.

The INEC Returning Officer for Kogi Central Senatorial District, Prof. Rotimi Ajayi, said Sadiku-Ohere garnered 52,132 votes against Natasha’s 51,763 votes to clinch the seat, a difference of 369 votes between them.

10. Banky W, Obanikoro lose Eti-Osa Reps seat to LP

Popular musician, Olubankole Wellington (Banky W) of the PDP, and Babajide Obanikoro, son of the former Minister of Defence, Musiliu Obanikoro, of the APC, lost Eti-Osa House of Representatives seat to the candidate of the Labour Party.

INEC declared Thaddeus Attah of the LP winner of the Eti-Osa Federal  Constituency seat in the House of Representatives.

Attah won with 24,075 votes, beating his counterparts, Banky W of the PDP, who had 18,666 votes, and Obanikoro of the APC, who had 16, 901 votes.

11. Senate spokesman loses seat to PDP

The Senate spokesperson and member of the APC, Ajibola Bashiru, currently representing Osun Central in the National Assembly, also lost his re-election bid to the candidate of the PDP, Olubiyi Fadeyi.

The Returning Officer for Osun Central Senatorial District, Prof Ibraheem Usman, while declaring the result in Osogbo on Sunday, said Fadeyi scored 134,229 votes to defeat Bashiru, who polled 117,609 votes. The Labour Party candidate, Oyebode Babalola, however got 2,292 votes.

12. Reps deputy minority whip loses reelection in Ogun

The Deputy Minority Whip and member of the House of Representatives representing Ijebu-North/East/Ogun Waterside Federal Constituency of Ogun State, Segun Adekoya, failed in his bid to secure his seat.

Adekoya, who contested under the platform of the PDP, lost to the candidate of the APC, Adegbesan Joseph.

Announcing the results, the Returning Officer, Adeyemi Bamgbose, said Adekoya polled 25,450 votes while the APC candidate garnered 35,708 votes.

13. Labour Party snatches Reps seat from Elumelu

The Minority leader of House of Representatives, Ndudi Elumelu, lost his seat to the Labour Party.

Elumelu is a member representing Aniocha/Oshimili Federal constituency of Delta State at the lower chamber.

Declaring the result on Monday at the INEC Collation centre in Oshimili South Local Government Area, the Returning Officer, Prof. Kenneth Abaribe, declared the LP candidate, Ngozi Okolie, as the winner of the election.

All fingers are still crossed and voters waiting to hit the polls again as the country awaits what unfolds in the March governorship elections across states of the federation.

March 11 governorship race

There is still a keen contest anticipated between the APC Governor Sanwo-Olu, who is seeking reelection in Lagos and the Labour Party’s governorship candidate, Gbadebo Rhodes, who may ride on the waves of the LP ‘revolutionary’ voters in the state.

In the race is also the governorship candidate of the PDP, Dr. Olajide Adediran, popularly called Jandor.

The fate of G5’s Seyi Makinde, who is seeking reelection in Oyo State, will also be decided at the March 11 governorship election, even given that the APC won the state during the February 25 presidential election. The candidate of the PDP, Atiku Abubakar, came second, while Obi came a distant third in the state.

Don Pedro Aganbi

Don Pedro Aganbi is a Nigerian Journalist, broadcaster, Filmmaker, brand and Public Relations Specialist and 1st prize winner, TV category, United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) & Africa Information Society Initiatives (AISI) Awards. He is also a recipient of the Global IT Champion Awards, courtesy of World Information Technology and Services Alliance (WITSA).

He is the Founder/Managing Partner, TechTV Network and convener of the hugely popular Titans of Tech Awards, Pan African Digital Initiative Summit & Expo and the TechTV Digital Agenda Forum.

Don Pedro Aganbi is the producer and host of the popular international award winning TV show, TechTV.

You May Also Like

More From Author

+ There are no comments

Add yours