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Okorocha storms Abuja court over certificate of return

Following the delay in re-assigning his suit over his certificate of return, Governor Rochas Okorocha of Imo State yesterday visited the Federal High Court in…

Following the delay in re-assigning his suit over his certificate of return, Governor Rochas Okorocha of Imo State yesterday visited the Federal High Court in Abuja.

Okorocha who arrived the court around 4:20pm in company of some aides, went straight into a meeting with the court’s Deputy Registrar, Litigation and departed around 5:20pm.

Okorocha, who was the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the Imo West Senatorial zone election, had filed a suit against the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) seeking an order of the court to compel the commission to issue him a certificate of return on the grounds that he was declared winner of the election by the Returning Officer.

The governor had also petitioned the Chief Judge of the court, Justice Abdu Kafarati for the re-assigning of the suit after the case was moved out of the initial court presided by Justice Taiwo Taiwo.

The candidates of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Jones Onyeriri and the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), Osita Izunaso, had in separate applications requested Justice Taiwo to recuse himself from the matter, which according to APGA counsel, Orji Nwafor Orizu, he has “clearly prejudged the substantive issues that will be resolved in this matter and clearly showed he has taken sides with the plaintiff (Okorocha).”

Before the suit was stalled, four other candidates and political parties in the election including: Nwachukwu Goodluck Clement of KOWA Party; Uche Onyeoma Ibe of Labour Party; Precious Nwadike of the United Progressive Party (UPP) and Izunaso of APGA had objected the suit being heard by the court.

The parties accused Okorocha of holding the Returning Office under duress to declare him winner, adding that the matter could only be handled at the elections petitions tribunal.

 

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