Imo Guber Tussle: Supreme Court resumes recess, set to deliver judgement

The Supreme Court sitting in Abuja resumed a recess for a few hours to reconvene and deliver judgement on the application before it seeking a review and reversal of the controversial judgement on the Imo gubernatorial elections.

Recalls that the judgement over which a review is being sought was delivered on January 14, which consequently invalidated the election of erstwhile Governor Emeka Ihedioha and declared incumbent Governor Hope Uzodinma as winner of the contentious Guber poll.

The apex court was also to decide on the matter yesterday but adjourned abruptly today.

At the resumed hearing, counsel for the appellant and respondent, however, announced their appearances.

The counsel representing Emeka Ihedioha, Chief Kanu Agabi urged the apex court to adopt their applications and grant the reliefs sought.

The reliefs are plainly urging the court to sack Uzodinma and reinstate Ihedioha as governor of the state.

Agabi in his submission, pointed out that on March 9, 2019 gubernatorial elections, Uzodinma claimed that some of his results from 388 polling units were excluded but could only tender results from 366 polling units.

He, therefore, affirmed that there was a balance of 22 unaccounted polling units from which Uzodinma yet, got results coming from nowhere.

Further, Agabi faulted the computation of the controversial score arising from the 388 polling units. He added that the number of votes cast even exceeded number of accreditation by over 129,000.

It was also averred that Uzodinma had branded and stigmatised the said election as invalid upon which Agabi wondered why he could benefit from such an election instead of nullification.

Upon this premise, the Ihedioha’s counsel raised another constitutional issue wherein he said Uzodinma has no evidence to show that he got the specific number of votes across the state as required by law.

In these considerations, Agabi said, “My Lord, fraud is evident. If they submitted results from 388 polling units, tendered results from 366 polling units with no indication of the whereabouts of the balance of 22 polling units, I believe something fundamental is wrong if not a fraud but a fatal error.

He adds that with the addition of votes from 388 polling units in favour of Senator Uzodinma exceeds the total number of accredited voters by 129,000 votes.

Countering the argument, Lawyer to Senator Hope Uzodinma says the application to revisit, review or set aside the judgment of the court is an incompetent one lacking in merit.

He argues further that the apex court lacks the jurisdiction to sit on appeal over any judgment delivered by the court except where cases of typographical errors or slips are noticed in the said judgment are established and in this case, no such errors have been established.

Mr Damian Dodo adds that the appellant approached the apex court in the face of compelling evidence that Senator Hope Uzodinma won the election, and therefore, has asked the court to dismiss the application.

Supreme Court has stood down Emeka Ihedioha’s application after listening to arguments from all the parties.

The apex court will deliver judgement any moment for now.

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Ilesanmi Adekanbi

Ilesanmi Adekanbi is a Journalist by profession. He has been working in the Nigeria media industry for the past 6 years. He holds several professional certificates. contact me on email: [email protected]

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