Why INEC had no reason issuing certificate of return to Ogah


The Abia State Government has refuted the claims of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) that Samson Ogah was declared the governor of the state because it was not served Okezie Ikpeazu’s notice of appeal.

Samson Ogah had obtained a court ruling nullifying Ikpeazu’s election as the governor of the state because he was allegedly not qualified to contest- as a result of tax offences.

Ogah had been declared the winner of the 2015 governorship election by the court and INEC was instructed to immediately award him his certificate of return.

Ikpeazu had however, immediately filed an appeal against the judgement.

Against the filing of the appeal, INEC on Thursday, went ahead to award Ogah his certificate of return creating a legal conundrum and tension in the state.

INEC had claimed that Ogah was awarded the certificate because Ikpeazu’s appeal papers were not served as at the time of the presentation.

On Thursday night however, the Abia state government revealed that INEC had actually been served the appeal papers before it awarded the certificate to Ogah.

In a statement, released by the state Attorney-General, Umeh Kalu, it was revealed that the notification documents were duly served on the electoral body at its headquarters in Abuja and were acknowledged.

The statement read partly, “It’s unfortunate that INEC said that it was not served. But the truth is that they were served. I have a proof to that. Saleh N. Ibrahim, Senior Clerical Officer at the Legal Services Department of the Commission’s Headquarters, Abuja, who stamped the Notice of Appeal and Injunction with the Commission’s official stamp by 12.50pm on Wednesday, June 29, 2016.”

“With the foregoing, it is now clear that the Commission had no reason or cause to proceed with their dangerous action of issuing a Certificate of Return to Dr. Uche Ogah when it was clearly in receipt of a Notice of Appeal and Stay of Execution expressly forbidding them from taking any further action on the Judgment of Justice Okon Abang of the Federal High Court pending the determination of the Appeal in the case.”

“It is rather surprising that the Commission could lend itself to be used for an act capable of destabilizing a State in Nigeria with the attendant consequences for anarchy and breakdown of law and order,” Kalu said.

Comments (2)

  1. is desperation of the highest order an act no man or institution should accept cos such actions is capable of derailing a democracy

  2. their actions to hurriedly issue certificate of return to UCHE OGAH and their subsequent plan to swear him in as governor is despera

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