Tribunal Sacks Ebonyi PDP Lawmaker Lazarus Ogbee

The National Assembly Election Petitions Tribunal sitting in Abakaliki, Ebonyi State on Monday sacked the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate of representing Ikwo/Ezza South Federal Constituency, Lazarus Ogbee.

The Court also declared the petitioner and candidate of the All Progressive Congress (APC), Chinedu Ogah winner of the election and ordered INEC to immediately issue a certificate of return to him.

READ ALSO: Tribunal Upholds El-Rufai’s Election As Kaduna Governor

In a unanimous judgment delivered by the chairman of the tribunal Justice Sika Henry-Aprioku amidst very tight security, at high court premises in Abakaliki the Ebonyi state capital, the tribunal held that the votes garnered by the APC candidate during the election were erroneous and wrongfully rejected by INEC electoral officers in some wards in the federal constituency.

The court, however, restored 8,000 votes to Ogah from votes which were earlier cancelled by INEC in some wards in Ikwo and Onueke urban in Ezza South local government.

The tribunal, however, ruled that Ogah scored the highest votes of 36,238 and withdraw the one earlier given to the PDP candidate Mr Lazarus Ogbee who scored 33,263 votes.

Barrister Mba Ukweni who is the counsel to Ogah lauded the judgment of the tribunal.

Barrister Roy Umahi counsel to the PDP candidate said he is disappointed. He says his client will surely appeal the judgment.

However, the APC candidate Chinedu Ogah while addressing journalists commended the judiciary for restoring the confidence of the people in the judiciary and remaining the last hope of the masses.

Cross River Elections: INEC Presents Certificate Of Return To Winners

inec-presents-cerifictate of return to nass winnersThe Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Nigeria has  presented Certificates of Return to winners of the gubernatorial and National Assembly elections in Cross River State .

Addressing the winners shortly before the presentation at the INEC headquarters in Calabar, the State capital, on Tuesday, the Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC), Sylvester Ezeani, urged the recipients to fulfill their campaign promises.

According to Mr Ezeani, the presentation of their certificates to the winners, which was carried out by the National Resident Electoral Commissioner, Thelma Iremirem, confirmed the Senators-elect winners of the election and marked the end of the electoral process.

Mr Ezeani reiterated the commitment of INEC to continually improve on the integrity of future elections.

Responding on behalf of the recipients, the Governor-elect, Senator Benedict Ayade promised to work with other political parties in Cross River State in order to foster development across the state.

However, two senators-elect were absent at the ceremony. They are expected to visit INEC’s headquarters in Abuja to obtain their certificates of return, as such documents are usually not given by proxy.

Senator Ayade, a member of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) was declared winner of the governorship election in Cross River State with 342,016 votes.

His two opponents, Mr Odey Ochicha of the All Progressives Congress (APC) had 53,983 votes, while Mr Fidelis Ugbo of the Labour Party scored a total of 36,918 votes.

The total votes cast, as announced by the Cross River State Returning Officer, Professor Comfort Ekpo, were 443,529.

Army Recovers 8 Ballot Boxes, 310 PVCs In Delta State

Ballot Boxes in Nigeria's electionsThe Nigerian Army has recovered eight ballot boxes and 310 Permanent Voters Card (PVCs) from suspected political thugs who tried to use them for election irregularities during the March 28 Presidential and National Assembly elections. 

The recovery was made known to reporters during a Show of Force exercise aimed at reassuring electorates of the commitment of security agencies to protecting them during and after the Governorship and House of Assembly elections of April 11.

Briefing the reporters, the Commanding Officer of the 222 Battalion, Agbarha-Otor, Ughelli North Local Government Area of Delta State in south-south Nigeria, Lieutenant Col. Mathew Oyekola, said that the success recorded in the Presidential and National Assembly elections of March 28, necessitated a repeat ahead of the April 11 polls.

“The suspects and the electoral materials have since been handed over to the police and the returning officer for the local government area,” he told reporters.

Areas covered by the Show of Force exercise include; Ughelli North, Ughelli South, Isoko North, Isoko South and Ethiope East.

Others are Ndokwa East, Ndokwa West, Bomadi and Burutu Local Government Areas.

In a related development, some party supporters in Delta State had intercepted a pick up van they alleged was diverting election materials meant for Ethiope East.

Akwa Ibom APC Petitions INEC, Demands Removal Of REC

inec-on-APC-rec-emovalThe Akwa Ibom State chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) has petitioned the Independent National Electoral Commission  (INEC) to remove the state Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC), Austin Okojie.

The APC, in its petition, stated that INEC should ensure that Austin Okojie does not conduct the April 11 governorship and House of Assembly elections in the state.

Speaking in Abuja, the National Vice Chairman of the party, Mr Hilliard Eta, alleged that cases of rigging, electoral fraud and manipulation of results took place during the presidential and National Assembly elections.

The party also alleged that there was evidence of fabrication of results, no original results sheets for the elections, and inflation of results.

Meanwhile, INEC says that it is investigating the petitions it has received against several state RECs over the conduct of the presidential and National Assembly elections.

The Chief Press Secretary to the INEC Chairman, Kayode Idowu said that the petitions border on different violations political parties believe took place during the elections.

The commission, however, said that it would look at the substance in the petitions and come out with a position.

13 Kwara Governorship Candidates Step Down For Governor Ahmed

governor ahmedThirteen governorship candidates in Kwara State have stepped down for the State Governor, Abdulfatah Ahmed.

The candidates called on their members to re-elect Governor Ahmed for a second term in order to complete his laudable programmes.

At the National Union of Journalists press centre in Ilorin, the governorship candidates under the aegis of Congress of Nigerian Political Parties, gathered to inform of their desire to step down in order to pave the way the re-election of Governor Ahmed.

Some of the 13 political parties include: Action Alliance, United Progressive Party, Social Democratic Party and African Peoples Alliance and others.

Meanwhile, the governorship candidates of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Senator Simeon Ajibola and that of Labour Party, Dr Mike Omotosho, have  dismissed the endorsement as a mere show that would not affect their chances of emerging as the next governor.

Reacting to the action, Senator Ajibola described the endorsement as nothing to worry about. He wondered how the endorsement by the other candidates would have any effect on his chances since most of them lacked followers.

Also opposing the endorsement, Dr Mike Omotosho of the Labour Party denied the rumour of stepping down for any candidate, wondering how he could withdraw in an election he is sure of emerging victorious.

Ihiala People Say No To Election Violence

IhialaIhiala, a peaceful Local Government Area in the south senatorial zone of Anambra State has not been the same after the presidential and National Assembly election violence on  March 28.

Asides thousands of Ihiala people demonstrating anger over the violence that occurred in the March 28 elections, they have also raised their voices against a repeat.

In a solidarity visit to the home of one of the victims of the March 28 election violence, Mr Ernest Azudialor Obiejesi, Ihiala people have also declared a death wish for whoever attempts to rig the April 11 governorship election.

Mr Obiejesi was a victim whom they thought had been killed during the fracas that broke out on the election day but survived.

Narrating the violent incident which left two policemen and several community members fatally injured, Obiejesi urged the people to stand up and defend the truth at all times.

The election at Ihiala turned violent when some political thugs invaded the collation center at the Local Government Area and shot sporadically which led to two policemen and several community members being fatally wounded.

ECOWAS, AU Election Observers Commend Nigerians, INEC, Security Agencies

ECOWASElection observers from the Economic Community Of West African States – ECOWAS and the African Union – AU, have described Nigeria’s presidential and parliamentary elections held on Saturday as transparent, successful and credible.

Both groups led by former presidents of Ghana and Liberia, Mr John Kufuor and Mr Amos Sawyer, said that the process so far meets basic criteria and standards for democratic elections in the region and around the world, despite the initial hiccups encountered.

They said that the commendable performance of the electoral officials, the impartial and exemplary coordination of security agencies and the high turnout and commitment of the voters far outweighed the challenges with election materials and security in some places.

Head of the African Union Observer Mission, Mr Amos Sawyer of Liberia, said that despite the initial problems with elections materials, isolated cases of violence in Bayelsa and Enugu states and extended elections in 350 polling units, the mission considers the process a success.

With 250 observers deployed through five regions excluding the north east, the head of the ECOWAS mission, former Ghanaian President, Mr John Kuffor, said Nigerian citizens, the electoral commission and the security agencies have done a good job so far.

He, however, said that they hoped the use of soldiers would be a one-off incidence.

The presidential and parliamentary elections of March 28 in Nigeria were marked by challenges of late arrival of election materials, as well as the failure of newly introduced card readers in many polling units across the country but these did not discourage Nigerians from exercising their franchise.

The perseverance and peaceful conduct of Nigerian voters has become one of the positive highlights of the elections.

Uba Asks INEC Not To Declare National Assembly Winner In Anambra

ubaA factional Senatorial Candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for Anambra South Senatorial Zone, Mr Chris Uba, has asked the electoral body not to declare any candidate of the PDP winner of the National Assembly election.

Mr Uba’s call came few hours to the announcement of the result of the National Assembly election in Anambra State.

He also asked the INEC not to issue certificate of return for reasons that the Supreme Court is yet to give its verdict on the duly nominated candidates for the 2015 National Assembly election.

Mr  Uba, said he had filed an order of interim injunction from the Supreme Court restraining INEC from issuing the certificate of return to any PDP Candidate for the National Assembly election in Anambra State pending the determination of the applicant’s appeal in the Supreme Court on the duly nominated PDP candidates for the 2015 National Assembly election in the State.

In the order filed on March 25, Mr  Uba said that the order was also directing the stay of all actions concerning the return of any PDP candidate for the National Assembly election as the duly elected candidate pending the determination of the matter of the duly nominated candidates in the Supreme Court.

Mr Uba further said that the reasons for the move included the fact that his appeal before the Supreme Court was adjourned for definite hearing to 9 June.

Elections: Corps Members Decry Ill Treatment In Osun

Corps MembersCollation of results was almost marred at one of the registration areas in Osogbo Local Government Area, Osun State as the corps members had to rely on light from their handsets and torch to, collate results of the presidential and National Assembly elections.

‎A Channels Television correspondent who observed the collation of result of Ward 5 at Salvation Army Middle school, observed that there was no electricity supply to the school as at 11.30pm when the exercise was ongoing.

Some of the Ad-Hoc staff of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) ‎in anger, lashed out at the Channels TV crew, complaining that they were not well catered for.

The corps members said that they were made to sleep on bare floor, adding that no light nor water was provided for them to ease their duty.

In aggression, they threatened to smash the camera of the crew, for daring to record them while collating the result in the dark.

However, the corps members ‎ended up collating the result for over two hours without light.

Police On Alert To Ensure Peaceful Election In Anambra – CP

policeThe State Commissioner of Police, Mr Hassan Karma, who attributed the success of the command to the support of the State Governor,Willie Obiano, said the police are on alert to ensure Anambra State is rid of any crime especially during this period of election.

As March 28 Presidential and National Assembly Election day approaches, the police in Anambra State have shown their readiness to curb crime in any form or shape to ensure violent free elections.

At the Headquarters of the Special Anti Robbery Squad, Awkuzu, in Oyi Local Government Area, Four suspected criminals met their Waterloo while 20 others were paraded for sundry violent crimes including kidnapping, armed robbery, car-snatching, and fake currency printing.

In a similar development, combined security forces including the Police, Army, DSS, Navy, NDLEA, and others embarked on a show of force with a road march ahead of tomorrow’s election, appealing to all and sundry to be law abiding in the discharge of their civic duties.

Starting the road march from the 302 Artillery Regiment, Onitsha, the Commander, Colonel Mohammed Bello, said the essence of the show of force was to display total domination of the entire State by the security agency while the Commander, 14 Field Regiment, Lieutenant Sheriff Aremu, said nobody should think of disrupting the election at all.

The dead ones were suspected kidnappers who died in a shootout with the police during arrest. Several arms were also recovered from them.

Mr Karma, advised parents to put their ward on checks during this election period.

Anambra State Governor, Willie Obiano, commended the police and assured of continued commitment to the safety and security of the State.

The Commander said there is adequate manpower that would guarantee peaceful polls in Anambra as they have, according to Intelligence Report, deployed enough security forces to flash-point areas where violence is perceived to break out during the election.

Group Decries Double Candidacy Of PDP Members In Anambra

PDPA Non-Governmental Organization, Anambra Youth Vanguard, in a press briefing, registered their grievances over the fielding of multiple candidates of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for the 11 seats of the House of Representatives and the three Senatorial seats.

Barely four days to the National Assembly election, issues over multiple candidacy of the PDP, surfaced in Anambra State.

Speaking on the matter, the Overseer of the group, Mr Ambrose Igwe, accused the State Independent National Electoral Commission of conniving with PDP to sabotage the electoral process.

He said the group would not accept such impunity of the PDP and at such would be ready on March 28 to see that the election is halted if INEC refuses to make an open declaration on the exact persons contesting on the PDP platform for the House of Representatives and Senate.

Responding to the allegations of connivance with the PDP, the State Independent National Electoral Commission, Public Relations Officer, Mr Frank Egbo, said the accusation was ”laughable” as the commission is a law abiding commission that respects the provisions of the court.

He said the names of the PDP candidates contesting presently are the ones declared authentic according to the ruling of the Appeal court.

Ekwunife Seeks Support For PDP In Anambra’s Awka-north

Uche_EkwunifeThe Peoples Democratic Party(PDP) Candidate for Anambra Central Senatorial Zone, Uche Ekwunife, has assured residents of the area of her readiness to attract developmental projects as well as be a strong voice for her people if elected Senator in the February 14 National Assembly election.

Ekwunife gave the assurance during her ward tour of Awka North and South Local Government Areas of Anambra State which are in the central senatorial district.

Anambra state is an APGA controlled state, but she urged the people to wake up from being at the periphery and aspire to be at the center which voting PDP would guarantee. She solicited votes for President Goodluck Jonathan for a second term in office, stressing that it would be a stepping stone to getting to the center.

In her ambition to represent the people of Anambra Central Senatorial Zone in the red chamber, she explained to the people that Anambra Central Senatorial District was made up of seven Local Government Areas in which Idemili Local Government area had produced senators for four times, Awka and Njikoka have also taken their shots with the exception of Anaocha and Dunukofia.

Ekwunife said in all of the representations, no woman had ever been elected.

She, therefore, urged them to allow a female representation with quality this time and feel the difference.

The people also expressed their support for the woman they described as an Amazon.