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You can’t stampede us into issuing certificate of return to Uwajumogu – INEC

By Chinedu Adonu

ENUGU – INDEPENDENT National Electoral Commission, INEC, has condemned yesterday’s protest at it’s headquarters led by Senator Benjamin Uwajumogu and his supporters over a Federal High Court judgement mandating the commission to release his certificate of return.

Nigeria’s Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) chairman Mahmood Yakubu

Okoye who stated this in Enugu on Monday while reacting to the incidence said that the commission will not be stampeded into issuing a certificate of return to the Imo  North Senator-elect, Benjamin Uwajumogu.

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He said “the demonstration is of no moment because we cannot rush to hand over the certificate of return to him, we must study the court judgement before we can comply. As a commission we must obey court order even if we are not satisfy, we will obey first before we appeal.

“It could be recalled that the commission was served with the judgement of the court order on Wednesday on 16th day of July 2019. The said judgement could not undergo the regular processes and procedures of the commission and must wait for the next commission meeting.

“The commission will not be stampeded into taking precipitate action or decision that may be detrimental to the electoral process and procedures,” he said.

Okoye revealed that the Commission has withdrawn and re-issued 87 certificates of return.

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He said “The Commission withdrew three Certificates of Return from the APC and issued to NNPP and NRM. The Commission withdrew 45 certificates of Return from APC and issued to the PDP (arising mostly from the Supreme Court decision on the Zamfara APC party primary election). The. Commission withdrew 39 certificates from the APC and re-issued to APC candidates,” he said.

It could be recalled that Benjamin Uwajumogu, senator-elect of Imo north, led some protesters to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) headquarters over the non-issuance of a certificate of return to him.

The electoral commission had set up a committee to look into allegations of misconduct in the senatorial election – after Uwajumogu had been declared winner.

That decision was challenged by Uwajumogu who contested under the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC).

The federal high court in Abuja ordered INEC to issue Uwajumogu a certificate of return but the electoral commission has not complied with the order.

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