The election petition tribunal in Abakaliki, Ebonyi State, has upheld the victory of Governor David Umahi. It struck out the suit by the People’s Democratic Movement (PDM) challenging the election.
The PDM sued the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) for allegedly excluding its name from the ballot paper.
Joined in the suit were Governor David Umahi and PDP as third respondent.
Umhai defeated All Progressives Congress (APC’s) Sunny Ogbuoji, and 35 others to win a second term in office.
But the PDM and its candidate, Ajah Agha, petitioned the tribunal for the “unlawful exclusion of his name from the ballot paper.”
The party prayed the tribunal to cancel the election and order a fresh one.
But tribunal Chairman Justice A.B Abdukareem said PDM failed to prov that it conducted its primaries in line with provisions of the Electoral Act.
The tribunal noted that there was no evidence to show that PDM submitted its candidate’s name to INEC before the deadline for parties to do so.
Justice Abdukareem said: “Your party sent the name three days after closure of submission according to finding. Also, your party did not hold primaries…according to INEC guideline; therefore your petition lacks merit.”
The lawmaker representing Ohaozara, Onicha and Ivo Federal Constituency, Livinus Makwe, has congratulated Umhai on his success.
He noted that the tribunal’s judgment was a true reflection of the people’s wishes, which they demonstrated on March 9.