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Abia governorship : Tribunal fixes Aug. 29 for adoption of final addresses

Gov. Okezie Ikpeazu of Abia State
Dr. Alex Otti

Umuahia, Aug. 7, 2019

The Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal sitting in Umuahia has fixed Aug. 29 for the adoption of final written addresses in a petition filed by Dr Alex Otti of the All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA).
Otti is challenging the election of Gov. Okezie Ikpeazu of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the March 9 governorship poll.
The Chairman of the three-member tribunal, Justice Lekan Ogumoye, announced the date for the adoption of the final written addresses after PDP called its only witness.
Ogumoye gave the respondents 10 days to file and serve their addresses.
He also gave the petitioners seven days to respond and three days for the respondents to reply on points of law.
The tribunal also fixed Thursday for ruling on the application by some members of APGA seeking the removal of APGA’s name as a joint petitioner in Otti’s petition.
News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Ikpeazu closed his case on Tuesday, after calling 39 witnesses.
NAN reports that Otti, who emerged third in the poll, is asking for a cancellation of the election in 15 of the 17 Local Government Areas of Abia.
He alleged that the election was marred by massive irregularities.
In a related development, Mr Martin Apugo, the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate for Ikwuano/Umuahia Federal Constituency in the Feb. 23 election on Wednesday closed his case at the National/State Assembly Elections Petitions Tribunal, sitting in Umuahia.
Apugo called 30 witnesses in his petition challenging the election of Rep. Sam Onuigbo of PDP.
He is asking the tribunal to either declare him winner or declare the election inconclusive.
The Chairman of the tribunal, Justice Cornelius Akintayo, adjourned the case to Aug. 19 and Aug. 21 for Onuigbo and PDP to open their defence.
He said that the witnesses’ testimonies would be taken consecutively.
Meanwhile, Apugo said in an interview with newsmen that he had confidence that the tribunal would deliver Justice in the petition.

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