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TRIBUNAL VERDICT: Rep raises alarm as gunmen invade homes

By Dapo Akinrefon

CALABAR—THE lawmaker representing Abi/Yakurr Federal Constituency in the House of Representatives, Dr Alex Egbona, yesterday, raised the alarm that his homes in the village and in Calabar have been under heavy attack, days after he decided to challenge the tribunal judgement against his election at the Court of Appeal.

The first attack was the invasion of his Ekureku country home by suspected military men about 24 hours after the tribunal judgement which gave victory to the PDP candidate, John Gaul Lebo.

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House of Representatives

Speaking to newsmen after the attack, Rep Egbona said: “Yesterday (Wednesday) again, I got a message that some unknown gunmen terrorised my village from about midnight and shot sporadically. About the same time too, another set of unknown gunmen went to my house in Calabar and shot several times before leaving.

“I cannot understand why my homes have come under attack. If the tribunal has ruled that the PDP candidate won at the tribunal, I have the right to appeal and should be allowed to be alive and pursue my case at the court of appeal.

“This intimidation will take us nowhere. I am going to the court of appeal to test the law and no amount of intimidation can stop me. My mission to the court of appeal is to proof that my people freely gave me a mandate and that mandate cannot be taken away through a bush market judgement.

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“I am appealing to law enforcement agents in our state to ensure my safety. I have drawn the attention of the police in my local government to the threat to my security and I believe that they will take appropriate actions.”

The lawmaker also alleged that he had received threat calls warning him to stay action on the appeal if “I wanted to remain alive.”

He said: “My family members in the village are now living in fear. This is not the democracy we fought for. I do know that this is a phase and it will pass away.

“Let me state for the umpteenth time that I will not back down on the case. No amount of attacks, invasion of my homes or threat calls will deter me. I have a covenant with my people to change the narrative in representation and nothing, I mean nothing, can stop me.”

Egbona urged all his supporters and family members to remain calm and unmoved by the threats, just as he expressed maximum confidence in the ability of security operatives to contain the situation.

Egbona and John Gaul are contending for the Abi/Yakurr Federal Constituency seat. While Egbona was declared winner of the election by INEC, the tribunal last Wednesday ruled that Egbona was not a candidate at the election and gave victory to John Gaul. Egbona is appealing the judgement.

 

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