By Gabriel Ewepu – Abuja
A support group, Imo Diasporas Support for Senator Hope Uzodinma 2019, on Tuesday, hailed the Supreme Court over its judgment declaring the Governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress, APC, in the 2019 Governorship Election in Imo State, Hope Uzodinma, as the duly elected Governor of Imo State, as it sacks the earlier declared winner and candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Hon Emeka Ihedioha, by the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, Election Tribunal and Court of Appeal.
This was contained in a statement signed by the coordinator, Imo Diaspora, Finland, Chief Nnnanna Okere, saying it is indeed the judiciary remains the last hope of the common man, which restored and reclaimed the mandate that Imo people freely gave to Senate Uzodinma.
According to the statement, he (Uzodinma) has all that it takes to transform the state and restore it to its past glory and in line with the foundation laid by its founding fathers including the late former Governor of the State, Chief Sam Mbakwe.
The group commended the apex court for its landmark judgment by rewriting the wrong right that was done to Uzodinma, the Imo people who overwhelmingly voted for him and the APC that provided him the platform to seek the mandate to serve his people.
It would be recalled that the Supreme Court on Tuesday, in a unanimous judgment of the seven-member panel, read by Justice Kudirat Kekere-Ekun, agreed that results in 388 polling units were unlawfully excluded during the collation of the final governorship election result in Imo State by INEC.
According to Justice Kekere-Ekun results from the 388 polling units added, Uzodinma polled a majority of the lawful votes and ought to have been declared the winner of the election by the INEC.
Consequently, she voided and set aside the declaration of lhedioha as the winner of the 2019 governorship election in the state.
The court also ordered the Certificate of Return unlawfully issued to lhedioha be immediately withdrawn by the INEC and a fresh one issued to Uzodinma as the duly elected Governor of the State.
The statement reads in part, “The Imo Diasporas Support for Senator Hope Uzodinma 2019, hails the decision of the Supreme Court of Nigeria declaring the gubernatorial candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Senator Hope Uzodinma as the duly elected governor of Imo State in the 2019 gubernatorial election in Imo State and sacking the erstwhile governor of the state, Hon Emeka Ihedioha of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
“It was known widely that Sen Uzodinma won the last election. We have confidence in the judiciary whom we believe would come to the rescue of Imo people whose votes were unlawfully canceled by officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) which gave unduly advantage to the candidate of the PDP.
“The judiciary indeed is the last hope of the common man and has therefore restored and reclaimed the mandate, which the great and good people of Imo freely gave to Senate Hope Uzodinma because they believe that he has all that it takes to transform the state and restore it to its past glory and in line with the foundation laid by its founding fathers like the late former governor of the state, Chief Sam Mbakwe.”
According to the group, efforts made to mobilize support for Uzodinma ahead of the 2019 governorship election that led to enthusiasm the Imo electorate gave their support and keyed into the Uzodinma campaign, which it thanked the Supreme Court for making their votes count and for agreeing that results in 388 polling units were unlawfully excluded during the collation of the final governorship election result in Imo State.
“Thanks for ordering its addition, which proved beyond doubt that Uzodinma polled a majority of the lawful votes cast in the election, which he ought to have been declared the winner of the election by INEC.”
Group also added that Imo is now in safe hands, “Imo is now in safe hands and we urge Uzodinma to be magnanimous in victory by carrying everybody along in the quest to reposition and rebuild Imo State given his antecedent of accommodation and politics of inclusiveness.”
The group also expressed optimism that in the next four years Imo people will experience unprecedented development, which was only witnessed under the Mbakwe-led administration in the second republic.