ABIA GUBER TRIBUNAL: OTTI CLOSES CASE WITH ONE WITNESS

REPORTER: JOHN MADUAGWU

After calling only one witness, Governor Alex Otti has closed his defense in the petition brought against him and six other respondents by Chief Ikechi Emenike and the All Progressives Congress (APC) at the Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal sitting in Abia State.

Under cross examination, the witness, Mr. Iheanacho Obioma, who was also the Director General of the Alex Otti Campaign Organization, told the tribunal that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) did its job before, during and the after the election in compliance with the provisions of the law.

He also read Dr. Otti’s resignation letter from the All Progressives Congress.

When presented with the INEC report on monitoring of Labour Party primaries by counsel to 4th and 5th respondents, Professor Paul Ananaba, (SAN), the witness agreed that the document was not signed by the Chairman of the party.

Responding to a question by counsel to the 6th and 7th respondents, Mr. Ladu Martins said the petitioners or any other person never complained at the time Dr. Otti left the APC in 2022 until now.

In an answer to a question posed by counsel to the petitioners, Mr. Fabian Okonkwo, the witness said, while he was the caucus secretary of APC before he left, he was not aware if Dr. Otti purchased nomination form to take part in the Governorship primaries of the APC.

The tribunal chairman, Justice H.T.D Gwadah, adjourned the matter to Monday August 21, 2023 for the 4th and 5th respondents, Chief Okey Ahaiwe and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to open and close their defense.

The Young Progressives Party (YPP) and Mr. Chima Nwafor, who are the 6th and 7th respondents will have Tuesday August 22, 2023 to open and close their own defense.

EDITED BY CHUKWUBUIKE MADU

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