Ikpeazu optimistic of victory at Appeal Court
ABIA State Governor, Dr Okezie Ikpeazu, of the Peoples Democratic Party has welcomed the decision of Dr Alex Otti of the All
Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) to challenge his (Ikpeazu’s) victory at the State Governorship Election Tribunal.
Giving judgment on the March 11 election and the subsequent supplementary poll, the tribunal had declared the governor duly elected, a verdict that is now being challenged by Otti’s appeal. Otti had in his reaction to the tribunal’s verdict on his petition challenging the decision of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in declaring Ikpeazu winner, said that the judgment did not reflect the wishes and aspirations the people expressed in the ballot, hence it “certainly cannot stand.”
Media Assistant to the governor, Mr. Ugochukwu Emezue, who made public the governor’s readiness to again meet Otti at the higher court, commended Otti’s move and described it as his right in line with the law and tenets of democracy.
Emezue, who also noted statements of the APGA National Chairman, Dr Victor Oye, that his party would appeal the judgment of the election petition tribunal chaired by Justice Usman Bwala, said “ Ikpeazu will be willing to follow Otti and his party even to the Supreme Court after defeating him (Otti) at the election, the rerun election and recently at the election petition tribunal.”
Oye had, while addressing the party supporters, described the tribunal judgment as a rape of justice, an indication that APGA would appeal it, even up to the Supreme Court. He expressed the optimism that his party would retrieve the mandate from Governor Ikpeazu and his PDP
According to the Media Assistant, the governor had appealed to his rivals to be sportsmanly in the overall interest of the state and thus expected Otti to exhibit the same virtue. He said: “The governor despite what the opposition says about him and being a temporary governor, will serve out his tenure and even do a second term.”
Also, former Minister of State for Defence, retired Colonel Austin Akobunadu, who is also the PDP National Vice Chairman in the Southeast, congratulated Ikpeazu and other PDP national and state elected officers whose elections were upheld by the Elections Petitions Tribunals that recently concluded their assignments in the state.
Akobundu, in a statement, urged elected members to be magnanimous in victory, assuring electorate in the region of the unrelenting determination of the party to make their welfare and provision of infrastructure the centre of government’s activities. He pledged that PDP would continue to improve on its performances in the 2019 electoral year.