By Ikechukwu Nnochiri
ABUJA—All Progressives Congress, APC, and its candidate in the October 12, 2013, bye-election in Delta Central senatorial district, Mr Oghenetega Emerhor, have said they intended to challenge, at the high court, the qualification of Chief Emmanuel Aguariavwodo to contest the election.
They have, meanwhile, asked the tribunal sitting in Asaba, Delta State, to strike out their petition, in which they are challenging the election conducted by Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, which Aguariavwodo was declared winner.
Counsel to the petitioners, Mr. Ahweyevu Mukoro, in an application to withdraw the petition, contended that “the petitioners/applicants have found out that Chief Aguariavwodo, did not submit his nomination form, Form E.C. 4 (v) and affidavit in support of personal particulars of persons seeking election to the office/membership of the Senate, Form C.F.0001 latest 26/09/2013, as stipulated by INEC in the timetable/guidelines for the bye-election, the return of which is the subject of the petition.
“The petitioners/applicants have filed a suit at the Federal High Court Abuja, challenging the candidature of Aguariavwodo at the bye-election of 12-10-2013 upon which INEC declared him elected. The issues raised in the suit are pre-election matters which cannot be determined by the election tribunal, and retaining this petition after the suit may raise issue of abuse of the judicial process.”
In the suit at the Federal High Court, APC and its candidate, are contending that they had sufficient evidence to prove that PDP connived with an official of INEC in Abuja, and smuggled in forged documents relied upon to endorse the nomination form of Senator Aguariavwodo, who eventually won the election.