AYADE’S CASE AGAINST SENATOR JARIGBE, DEAD ON ARRIVAL-MBA UKWENI SAN.

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By: Admin.

 

 

The lead Counsel to Senator Jarigbe Agom Jarigbe in the Senatorial elections petition tribunal ,Mba Ukweni, SAN has stated that the case instituted against the election of Senator Jarigbe by the former governor of the state, Ben Ayade requires no opposition to fail.

 

While presenting his final address to the tribunal, headed by Justice M. A Sambo, Mba Ukweni, SAN during his adumberation, told the tribunal that the grounds of the petition and the relief sought is dead on arrival.

 

He argued that Ben Ayade cannot be said to have won the elections and at the same time is seeking for its nullification.

 

Ukweni maintained that seeking to be returned winner of the election and at the same time saying the election is null and void is an inconsistency that is bizarre and strange.

 

The Senior Advocate told the tribunal that the petitioners called 34 witnesses and complained of results in 420 poling units and even if the respondent calls no witness, the case of the petitioners fails on its own.

 

According to Ukweni the evidence by the witnesses contradicts their written statement on oath and therefore cannot stand.

 

He held that “The written statements on oath of the witnesses contained complaints of corrupt practices, violence, vote buying, inducement of voters and that these are serious criminal allegations but with no backing of a single report from any security agency before the court.”

 

In his presentation, counsel to INEC, Habib Lawal told the tribunal to dismiss the petition in its entirety.

 

He held that before an election is invalidated, it must be on the basis of substantial non compliance.

 

He said in this case there is evidence that there are 874 polling units in Cross River North Senatorial District and the petitioners disputes results in 367 of them and called only 36 polling units agents which is of terrible insignificance.

 

He told the tribunal that the commission did not withhold the BVAS machine and never in the pleadings of the petitioners did they list the BVAS machine as one of the evidence to be relied upon.

 

On his part, counsel to the PDP Ruben Egwuaba told the court that all the witnesses called by the petitioners pleaded the presidential election results and not the Senatorial elections result and this makes their case Sui Generis.

 

While he equally held that a party cannot plead a document and then during trial bring another document, he urged the court to dismiss the petition on all grounds the petition was predicated with substantial costs.

 

Counsel to the petitioners, Professor Mike Ozekhome, SAN, on his part, prayed the tribunal to uphold their petition and tongue lashed INEC for committing serial acts of illegalities and seeking to take benefit and advantage from it.

 

He pointed out that the same INEC that gave them form EC8A is the same party arguing it should have been EC81 and that they used presidential instead of Senatorial form.

 

He said the Commission should be tongue lashed and whipped with Judicial koboko as they are the ones who provided form EC8A.

 

The tribunal after listening to the final arguments adjourned the case for judgment and said the date will be communicated to the parties.

 

Amawu Cletus Albert Amawu

I'm a Journalist, Host/Producer of The Verdict, your voice of conscience on FAD FM 93.1, Calabar, Public Affairs Commentator, Social Change Agent.

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