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Anambra Central rerun: Tribunal grants order to serve Umeh

Sir Victor Umeh
By Chimezie Anaso
Anambra Elections Petition Tribunal in Awka has granted a motion ex-parte filed by Mr Chris Ekweozo seeking to serve Chief Victor Umeh, Senator representing Anambra Central District through substituted means.

Ekweozo, the candidate of Mega Progressive Peoples Party (MPPP) in the Jan. 13 re-run election, had in a petition with number EPT/AN/SEN/01/18 sought the nullification of the election.

All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) and Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) are second and third respondents in the matter.

The petitioner claimed that Umeh who was returned as the winner of the election was not validly elected with majority votes cast.

He also claimed that Umeh overshot the spending limit stipulated by the Electoral Act.

Ekweozo said that the re-run election was marred with corrupt practices perpetrated by the first respondent and his agents in connivance with the INEC, the third respondent.

He said Umeh was still chairman of his political party at the time of the election in 2015 and maintained that Umeh should not be allowed to re-contest in the event of nullification of the said election.

Ekweozo, a legal practitioner, who appeared for himself told the tribunal that he had not succeeded in serving the defendant since he filed his petition on Feb. 2.

The applicant prayed the court to order that he be allowed to serve the respondent by substituted means.

“I pray for an order of this honourable tribunal granting leave to the petitioner to serve the first respondent in the petition by substituted means to wit by pasting same at conspicuous places.

“Chief Victor Umeh’s country home in Ifite Village, Aguluizigbo, Anaocha Local Government Area or on the tribunal notice board inside Awka High Court Complex, and for such further order(s) as the tribunal may deem fit to make in the circumstance,” he said.

The chairman of the Tribunal, H.A. Olusiyi after listening to the argument by the applicant granted the motion and ruled that Umeh be served by substituted means.

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