The Anambra Central Senatorial Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Awka, on Friday, struck out a petition challenging the victory of Sen. Victor Umeh in the January 13 Anambra senatorial rerun election.
NAN reports that the three-man tribunal, presided by Justice H. A. Olusiyi, Justice A. O. Ayoola, and Justice A. U. Birnin Kudu, dismissed the five reliefs sought by the petitioner as lacking merit and the inability of the applicant to proof his case.
The petitioner, Mr Nkem Ekweozoh, candidate of the Mega Peoples Progressives Party (MPPP), had claimed that Umeh was not duly elected by majority of valid votes cast and that the victory was invalid as it was fraught with corrupt practices.
He further said that Umeh was not qualified to contest the election as his nomination came at a time he was still the national chairman of his party, APGA.
Ekweozoh equally claimed that Umeh spent far above the maximum election expenses of N40 million as stipulated by law.
Delivering a unanimous judgment that lasted more than five hours, Justice Olusiyi described the petitioner as a “meddlesome interloper”, and noted that Ekweozoh lacked the locus standi to contest the out-come of the election.
The panel further ruled that the tribunal lacked jurisdiction to look into one of the complaints which related to Umeh’s nomination, sponsorship and candidature.
Olusiyi also described Ekweozoh as a “rabble rouser” for making heavy weather of the issues of Umeh’s sponsorship and nomination when he was not a member of APGA or an aggrieved aspirant.
“You cannot meddle into the domestic affairs of a party to which you are a complete stranger.
“All the particulars of fact in support of the petitioner’s grounds that Umeh at the time of the election was not qualified to contest the election were not proved by any credible evidence known to our laws and therefore the petition had failed woefully,” he concluded. NAN