Tribunal strikes out a petition against Abia lawmaker

By Iyke Nwachinemere Kay

The election petition tribunal sitting in Umuahia this morning stroke out the case against the honourable member Representing Ohafia south constituency, Hon. Ifeanyi Uchendu.

In a suit filed by the candidate of the All Progress Grand Alliance (APGA), Hon. Leonard Eme Umezuruike on the 30th day of March, 2019 challenging the emergence of Hon. Uchendu as the duly elected member in the House of Assembly election held on 9th day of March 2019 across the country.
In the suit No: EPT/AB/HA/11/2019, Hon. Leonard Umezuruike vs Francis Ifeanyi Uchendu and 3 others, the APGA candidate had prayed the court to declare him winner of the election arguing that the candidate of the PDP, Hon. Uchendu was fraudulently declared by the INEC returning Officer in the election.

But in a twist of event, the petitioner on the 18th day of April, 2019 filled a notice of motion to withdraw his petition stating that he had hurriedly approached the court with the hope of assembling the unit election documents to with the result sheets which he was unable to do on time. He affirmed that after eventually gathering his figures, it was clear that the candidate of the People's Democratic Party, Hon. Ifeanyi Uchendu had won the election outrightly and as a result approached the court for the withdrawal of his earlier petition.

In her ruling, the 3 man panel of the election tribunal chaired by Hon. Justice A. A. Aderibigbe with Hon. Justice W. Animahun and Hon. Khadi Usman as members granted the application of the petitioner by striking out the case instituted by him against Hon. Uchendu.

It could be recalled that Prof. Mrs Elisi Adanma Sabina - the returning officer for the house of assembly election for Ohafia South Constituency had declared Hon. Ifeanyi Uchendu winner of the state Assembly election having scored the highest number of votes (6228) in the election while the candidate of the All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA), Hon. Leonard Umezuruike scored a total of 4162 to emerge second in the election.

Speaking after the judgment, the vibrant law maker representing Ohafia South Constituency, Hon. Ifeanyi Uchendu who was physically at the court during the judgement thanked God for the outcome of the case. He encouraged every other candidate of the other parties to join hands with him in giving the people of Ohafia South Constituency more better representation at the state Assembly. He rededicated his victory at the poll to God and the good people of Ohafia South Constituency.

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