Akwa Ibom North: Court orders INEC to recognise Akpabio as APC senatorial candidate




Reprieve has come the way of the former Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill Akpabio, as the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja has ordered recognition of the former Minister of Niger Delta Affairs as the senatorial candidate of Akwa Ibom North.

The court Thursday ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to recognise the former governor as the All Progressives Party (APC), Akwa Ibom senatorial North candidate.

The order was given by Justice Emeka Nwite of the Federal High Court, Abuja, to recognise and publish the name of Akpabio as the APC candidate for the Akwa Ibom North-West senatorial district in the upcoming election.

In his ruling, Justice Nwite stated that INEC had broken the law by refusing to accept and publish Akpabio’s name, despite the fact that the APC submitted it as their candidate.

“I hereby declare that the defendant (INEC) publish the name of the 2nd plaintiff as the authentic candidate,” he said.

In the suit filed before Nwite, the APC and Akpabio are 1st and 2nd plaintiffs respectively while INEC is the sole defendant.

INEC had recently cautioned the APC against its choice of candidate for the Akwa Ibom North-west Senatorial seat.

The commission stated that unless the party followed the proper procedure, the name of the former Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Akpabio, presented by the party remained invalid.

The party’s candidate, Udom Ekpoudom, had won the primary, which was allegedly overseen by INEC staff members in the district.

However, the party substituted Akpabio’s name for his own.

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