Tension In Abia State As Supreme Court Reserves Judgment On Gov’ship Dispute

January 10, 2024
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From Joshua Chibuzom

The people of Abia state have continued to express apprehension as the Supreme Court has reserved judgment on the appeal brought by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and it’s candidate in the 2023 governorship election in Abia State, seeking to undermine the victory of Abia State Governor, Dr. Alex Otti, OFR, in the March 18, 2023 election.

The apex court on Wednesday after listening to the arguments by parties in the suit reserved judgment on a date to be communicated to the parties and their counsel.

The Supreme Court panel of five Justices, led by Hon. Justice Inyang Okoro upon taking arguments on the preliminary motions on notice to strike out some alleged incompetent issues arising in the briefs of the Appellants and the 2nd Respondent, heard the appeal of Chief Okey Ahaiwe/PDP.

Below are highlights of the PDP vs. Gov. Alex Otti Appeal Hearing at the Supreme Court on Wednesday, January 10, 2024:

Appearance List
1) Chief Alade Agbabiaka, SAN
2) Dr. Joseph Nwobike, SAN
3) Prof. Paul Ananaba, SAN
4) Ahmed Raji, SAN
5) CAN Nwokeukwu, SAN,
6) Chief Uche Ihediwa, SAN,
7) A. Malik, SAN
8) Chief Theo Nkire

1ST RESPONDENT (INEC)
1) JTU Nnodum, SAN
2) KC Nwufo, SAN
3) E. A. John NWOSU, Esq.

2ND RESPONDENT (Gov. Alex Otti)
1) A. J. Owonikoko, SAN
2) Prof. Fatoke, SAN
3) Akin Afolabi, SAN
4) Ken Ahia, SAN,
5) Olusola Dare, Esq.

3RD RESPONDENT(Labour Party)
1) Dr. Onyechi Ikpeazu, SAN,
2) Chief Umeh Kalu, SAN,
3) Echezona Etiaba, SAN,
4) Dr. Sonny Ajala, SAN,
5) Valentine Offia, Esq.

The panel of 5 Justices led by Hon. Justice Inyang Okoro upon taking arguments on the preliminary motions on notice to strike out some alleged incompetent issues arising in the briefs of the Appellants and the 2nd Respondent, heard the appeal of Chief Okey Ahaiwe/PDP by taking arguments from Counsel and reserved Judgement on a date to be communicated to the parties and their counsel.

Uche Ihediwa, SAN Counsel to PDP struggled to answer the question posed by the apex court on what was the votes scored by PDP as shown in the IREV result for Obingwa LGA.

Ihediwa SAN also was unable to explain why he failed to FRONT LOAD/attach the Obingwa LGA result of the purported 108,000 votes scored by PDP to his Petition.

Throwing light on the Obingwa LGA, Owonikoko SAN informed the court that the accredited voters for the State House of Assembly and the Governorship for the same day was about 27,000 voters.

Dr. Onyeche Ikpeazu, SAN in his submission “argued” that the appeal is lacking in merit as the Obingwa LGA 108,000 result relied upon by PDP “bore” the stamp of Ward Collation Agent instead of Local Government Collation Agent as stipulated by the Law.

1) Abubakar Malami, SAN*
2) Tochukwu Maduka, SAN
3) Ubong Akpan

1ST RESPONDENT (INEC)

1) Mrs. J.O. Adesina, SAN
2) Dr. Nosiru Tijani, Esq
3) S. G. Udoh, etc.

and other Counsel for the other parties announced their appearance.

The appeal was argued by the respective Counsel to the parties and Judgment reserved.

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