TRIBUNAL SACKS EBONYI PDP FEDERAL LAWMAKER, DECLARES APC’S CHINEDU OGAR WINNER
The National Assembly Election Petitions Tribunal sitting in Abakaliki has ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to issue certificate of return to Comrade Chinedu Ogar of All Progressives Congress (APC) as the duly elected member representing Ikwo and Ezza South Federal Constituency.
This followed a petition filed by Comrade Ogar challenging the declaration of Chief Lazarus Ogbeh of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP as the winner of the February 23, 2019 election in the Federal constituency.
In a unanimous judgement delivered by Justice Sika Aprioku, the Tribunal held that evidence before it as well as Certified True Copy of the Constituency Election results tendered by the petitioner showed that INEC Collation officers engaged in vote reduction and rejection in some wards in Ikwo and Ezza South Local Government Areas.
According to the Tribunal, the affected wards include Enyibirchiri, Noyo-Alike, Inyimagu, Ndiagu Echara, Idembia Umunwagu, Onueke Urban, Amagu Nsokara and Ezama.
Justice Aprioku said in line with section 50 of the 2010 Electoral Act, as Amended, the tribunal recomputed results from the wards and found out that Comrade Ogar polled thirty-six thousand, two hundred and thirty-eight votes to defeat Chief Lazarus Ogbe, who got thirty-three thousand, two hundred and sixty-three votes.
The Tribunal described as a show of shame, the action of INEC for denying a Certified True Copy of results it issued to Comrade Ogar and set aside the declaration of Chief Ogbeh as the winner of the Election.
Counsel to Comrade Ogar, Mr. Tofambar Ukweni, commended the Tribunal for observing that INEC did not collate the proper results of the Election.
Also Comrade Ogar of APC said the mandate of the people had been restored and thanked that the tribunal for delivering a sound judgement.
However, Counsel to the Peoples Democratic Party, Mr. Roy Nweze, accused the Judge of bias, emphasising that the respondents would go on appeal.
Effort to speak with Chief Lazarus Ogbe of the PDP was not successful as he hurriedly left the Tribunal.