…declares Edo Speaker Akoko-Edo federal constituency candidate
By Alemma Aliu
The Court of Appeal sitting in Benin City yesterday nullified the All Progressives Congress, APC, National Assembly primary election appeals committee headed by former governor of Edo State, Professor Oserheimen Osunbor. It also declared the Speaker, Edo State House of Assembly, Mr Kabiru Adjoto the candidate of the party in Akoko-Edo Federal Constituency.
Delivering its judgment on an appeal brought before it by Adjoto, who claimed to have won the party’s primary election but was denied the ticket, Justice Moore Abraham-Adumein said the trial court ought to have heard the case brought before it.
He said:” The trial court for reasons best known to it failed or neglected to make any pronouncement on the issue before it. The Osunbor committee was not properly constituted because the committee contravenes Article 21 B of the APC guidelines which said no member of the five-member appeals committee shall be from the state of assignment. The committee abinitio ought not to hear the case. Having considered the evidence before the lower court which it did not consider, Adjoto won the primary election as the Returning Officer during the election, Sufiyanu Igbafe declared that Adjoto scored 7,034 votes against his opponent, Peter Akpatason who scored 5,606 votes.’’
Consequently, he said: “This appeal is hereby unanimously allowed and the prayers sought by the appellant in the trial court are hereby granted and the sum of N300,000 is hereby awarded as cost against the first and second respondents”
He said his two colleagues, Justice Chioma Nwosu-Iheme, who is the presiding justice and Justice Tunde Efotoye agreed with the judgment.
However, lawyer to Akpatason, Omoh-Ige Adebayo said they would contest the judgment in the Supreme Court.
An elated Adjoto said: “The judiciary is not only the last hope of the common man but also of the big man.”