Abia Elections Petition Tribunal: INEC clears Kalu

Posted by News Express | 15 May 2015 | 4,424 times

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Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has finally complied with the order of the National and State House of Assembly Elections Petition Tribunal to allow former governor of the state, Dr. Orji Kalu to inspect documents used for Abia North Senatorial election.

Counsel to the petitioner, Mr. Perfect Okorie, confirmed the development to the tribunal, sitting at the Federal High Court Complex in Umuahia, where it relocated after its inaugural sitting at Abia State High Court Complex along Ikot-Ekpene Road, Umuahia.

The tribunal also granted Kalu another ex-parte order yesterday to inspect and retrieve records from the card readers deployed for  the election.

Kalu, who ran for the election on the platform of Progressive Peoples Alliance ( PPA), is challenging the return of Mao Ohuabunwa of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

Chairman of the tribunal, Justice Mohammed Wakili, said: “The tribunal hereby grants the request to inspect information recorded in all the card readers used for the Abia North Senatorial District election.”

He ordered that the exercise be conducted within seven days and  adjourned the matter till May 25.

Counsel to Kalu, Okorie, had at the inaugural sitting of the tribunal on May 6, applied to be allowed access to the documents used for the election.

“We had to report to the tribunal on the compliance so far, to inform them that INEC was able to comply with the order. You know INEC and their foot-dragging; they wouldn’t want you to have what you need to prosecute your petition,  but then, we had to compel them to do that and they only agreed to do that today (yesterday) and they are headed to Arochukwu,” Okorie said.

“Assuming they have not been complying to the extent they are now, the tribunal would have made some consequential orders against INEC and then demand their immediate compliance,” he explained.

Okorie stated that in line with the order of the tribunal for them to inspect information on the card readers, his team would do that immediately “with our forensic experts.”

*Adapted from Daily Sun. Photo shows Kalu

Source: News Express

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