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Appeal Court upholds Umahi’s election as Ebonyi Governor

By News Express on 12/12/2015

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The Appeal Court sitting in Enugu yesterday dismissed the appeal by the 2015 governorship candidate of the Labour Party (LP) in Ebonyi State, Mr. Edward Nkwegu, for lack of merit.

It consequently upheld the verdict of the governorship tribunal in Ebonyi State which affirmed the victory Engr. David Umahi of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the April 22 election in the state.

Delivering the judgement on behalf of other four judges, Justice JOK Oyewole, explained that the five reliefs sought by the applicant lacked merit.

The Governorship Election Petition Tribunal in Abakaliki had in October dismissed the petition by Nkwegu challenging the declaration of Engr. Umahi by INEC as the winner of the election for lacking in merit.

It also noted the inability of the petitioner to prove allegations of corrupt practices and criminalities as contained in his petition.

Dissatisfied with the judgment of the tribunal, the LP candidate proceeded to the Court of Appeal sitting in Enugu.

In the appeal filed by his counsel, Chief U.N. Udechukwu (SAN), Nkwegu prayed the appeal court to set aside the judgment of the tribunal which he described as a grave error of law.

He urged the court to annul the election of Engr. Umahi and order a fresh poll since, according to him, the governorship election was marred by widespread irregularities.

But counsel for Engr. Umahi, Arthur Obi Okafor (SAN), urged the court to dismiss the appeal for lacking in merit.

He said that Governor Umahi was validly elected in the election in substantial compliance with the Electoral Act.

Speaking with journalists at the Appeal Court premises after the judgement, Umahi stated: “I thank everyone that is here. We are grateful to God for His mercies. We thank God who has constantly frustrated the machinations of the enemies and detractors of Ebonyi State.

“Our learned judges said the appeal was functionally useless. We should continue thanking God as the bible tell us that whatever comes from God will always overcome. This victory is of God and no man can set it aside. Our detractors have been going about looking for whom to bribe.

We have confidence in God and the judiciary.

“Anywhere they take us to, victory will still be ours. They are so ashamed of what we are

doing in Ebonyi  State and they will  continue to live in shame.

“I am impressed by the judges, they were wonderful. I thank all our lawyers who defended us.” 

•Photo shows Governor Umahi (in white babanriga) acknowledging cheers from supporters  after the Court of Appeal sitting in Enugu  reaffirmed Umahi’s victory at the last governorship election in Ebonyi State ...on Friday.

Source News Express

Posted 12/12/2015 06:09:56 AM





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