Today at the Court of Appeal, a motion has been discharged by Justice Abubakar Yahaya restricting Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) from conducting the re-run election into the Anambra Central Senatorial District, standing on the earlier order made on Nov. 20, 2017 directing INEC to conduct election for the senatorial seat within 90 days could not be reversed.
“The court hereby refuses to grant the request for the postponement of the election already scheduled for Saturday, for the avoidance of doubt, we have not restrained INEC from conducting the election as ordered by this court on Nov. 20, 2017’’ said Justice Yahaya
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Sen. Ani Okonkwo, an aggrieved aspirant of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) had approached the appellate court with the application. Okonkwo had through his counsel, Chief Solomon Umoh (SAN), sought for leave to appeal against the Nov. 20, 2017 decision of the court of appeal, which ordered INEC to conduct a re-run election in that senatorial district within 90 days.
Okonkwo had claimed that he was interested in challenging the decision of the appellate court last year as a senatorial aspirant. He, however, averred that the application could not be entertained because most parties joined in the application were not served with the court processes. Okonkwo trying to twist the legal issue then applied for an adjournment to enable him effect service on all the parties.
Thinking he could lose out since the election had been slated for Jan.13, he then filed a motion seeking the court to bar INEC from holding the election pending the determination of his appeal, he went further to impel the court to compel INEC’s counsel, Mr Tanimu Inuwa, to make an undertaken in the open court that INEC would not go ahead with the election having been aware of his pending application. Tanimu immediately objected to the request on the ground that huge public fund had been expended on preparation for the poll and he does not have the power to make any undertaken to postpone the poll because of the subsisting appeal court judgment of Nov. 20.