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Legal war looms in Imo, as governorship candidates head to tribunal

By Chinonso Alozie, Owerri

About 40 governorship candidates in Imo state, Wednesday, disclosed their resolution to head to the tribunal to challenge the outcome of the just concluded gubernatorial election in the state.

File: Lawyers

The candidates and their party chairmen in Owerri, through their spokesperson, the National Deputy Chairman of the Peoples Party of Nigeria, PPN, Ukadike Chinedu, said that they were peeved by the report credited to some guber candidates in the state, saying that the election was free, fair and credible.

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Vanguard had reported that about ten governorship candidates under the name forum of 2019 governorship candidates of political parties in Imo state, met and commended the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, for conducting the most transparent election which produced Emeka Ihedioha, of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, winner of Imo guber election.

But that declaration has now been punctured by another set of governorship candidates.

According to the opposing camp, spokesperson Ukadike, that in their own group, all the governorship candidates had taken a stand to challenge the victory of Ihedioha, individually in the court.

One of his reasons, was that Ihedioha, did not meet the constitutional requirements to be declared winner of the said election.

Ukadike’s argument as captured by Vanguard, “What is happening in Imo state, is unacceptable and on our own we have decided to address it once and for all. How can one who did meet the constitutional requirements of winning an election be declared winner of the election.

“We are 47 governorship candidates and our party chairmen are here, We have agreed to go to court. We are going to court individually because it is not a consolidated suit. What we want to achieve is to disabuse the minds of our people in Imo state, and Nigeria at large, that something is wrong about the governorship election in Imo state. A lot of things have gone wrong and now is time to correct those things.

“We don’t want this to become precedence in Imo state. We are ready to go to tribunal to tell the whole world that the election did not follow the due process.”

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Also speaking, the governorship candidate of the Masses Movement of Nigeria, MMN, Chidozie Iheanacho, was of the view that, “What happened on the 10th of March, was a rape of the constitution. We are not here because of Ihedioha, we are here because of the constitution. If we allow this to happen then it will continue.

“Section 199 of the constitution is very clear, on who should be the governor and what should qualify one to be a governor in an election like this, imagine, we have 27 local government areas, and I want you to ask, did Ihedioha, score two third of the results. We can’t allow this to happen in Imo state.

“We are worried that somebody can be governor with just one or two local government areas. Like in Owerri zone, there was no use of card reader and results were produced, how come.”

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