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2019 Imo gov’ship: Supreme Court declines to sack Uzodinma, fines PDP lawyer N40m

The Supreme Court has dismissed an application demanding the sack of Governor Hope Uzodinma who the court had declared as the winner of the 2019…

The Supreme Court has dismissed an application demanding the sack of Governor Hope Uzodinma who the court had declared as the winner of the 2019 Imo State governorship election.

A five-member panel of justices on Tuesday led by Justice Inyang Okoro held that it had no jurisdiction to entertain the appeal brought by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its candidate in the election, Emeka Ihedioha, describing it as frivolous and highly vexatious.

The apex court proceeded to award a personal cost of N40m against Mike Ozehkome (SAN), the counsel to PDP, and Ihedioha.

PDP and Ihedioha’s application had sought to remove Uzodinma from office on the premise that he was not validly nominated by the All Progressives Congress (APC) to contest the election that led to his first tenure in 2019.

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The application further sought to invalidate the years that Uzodinma spent in office as governor.

The PDP and Ihedioha had applied to join the appeal challenging Uzodinma’s qualification, which was originally filed by Uche Nwosu, who was the governorship candidate of the Action Alliance (AA).

Specifically, the PDP and Ihedioha prayed the Supreme Court to give effect to its 2019 verdict that disqualified Nwosu on the ground that he was nominated by both the AA and the APC to contest the election.

The appellants argued that if the apex court recognised Nwosu as candidate of the APC, there was no legal basis for its subsequent judgement that sacked Ihedioha and declared Uzodinma, who was also sponsored by the same APC, as the valid winner of the governorship poll.

Consequently, the PDP asked the apex court to restore Ihedioha, since the APC was precluded from sponsoring two candidates in the election.

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