The Court of Appeal sitting in Calabar, Cross River State capital has upheld the judgment issued by the Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Calabar in September 2019, calling for fresh elections to be conducted in about 15 polling units in Abi Local Government Area. Abi has over 100 polling units.
Delivering the judgement, the presiding Judge, Justice T. Abubakar, said that the appeal brought before it by Hon. Davies Etta of the PDP lacked merit and as such cannot be entertained by the court.
The court upheld the decision of the lower tribunal and ordered INEC to within 90 days conduct fresh elections in 15 polling units in the local government area.
Hon. Davies Etta of PDP was declared winner of the March 2019 state house of assembly elections for Abi LGA having polled a total of 12,521 votes to slam his closest contender Iwara Inah of the APC who had 7,603 votes.
Iwara took the matter to the tribunal and the tribunal had ordered INEC to conduct a fresh election in 15 polling units wards in Abi. This was because of perceived irregularities in those polling units which led to the cancelation of results gotten from those units.
The tribunal said the total number of registered voters in those polling units was about 10,000 and enough to swing the outcome of the elections to either side, therefore there was need to conduct fresh elections.
Ettta however, appealed to the tribunal arguing that INEC did not use voters register to determine the total number of registered voters in those units.
He further argued that following INECs register the numbers of voters in those units are not up to the acclaimed figure. And as such there’s no need for a fresh election since he has well over 5000 votes ahead of his contender.
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