The Ebonyi State Election Governorship Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Abuja, on Wednesday, dismissed a petition by the All Progressives Grand Alliance and its governorship candidate, Prof Benard Odoh, challenging the election of Francis Nwifuru as the governor of the state.
The Independent National Electoral Commission had declared Nwifuru of the All Progressives Congress as the winner of the March 2023 governorship election in the state.
Displeased, Odoh approached the court to overturn the Ebonyi governor’s election on the grounds of non-qualification.
Odoh had argued through his lawyer, Jibrin Okutepa, SAN, that Nwifuru, “who was until and after the election, a member of the Ebonyi State House of Assembly and also occupied the office of the Speaker of the house under the platform of Peoples Democratic Party was not qualified to contest the election to the seat of Governor of Ebonyi State.”
Consequently, APGA and Odoh urged the Tribunal to nullify Mr Nwifuru’s victory on account of his non-qualification for the election.
However, delivering judgment on the petition, the three-member panel headed by Justice Lekan Ogunmoye, held that the petitioners lacked the locus standi to institute the action because the issue was an internal affair of the APC.
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