By Ijendu Iheaka
The tussle between him and Rev. Augustine Ehiemere will scuttle All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) candidates’ chances of success in the 2022 elections in Abia if not settled, Prince Nnanna Ukaegbu has said.
Prince Ukaegbu disclosed this in Aba on Sunday during an interview session with newsmen.
Ukaegbu, a lawyer, claimed that he has been affirmed as the substantive Chairman of Abia APGA by a High Court of Abia State, in Umuahia Judicial Division and the Court of Appeal in the Owerri Judicial Division.
He said that the Rev Augustine Ehiemere-led executive is usurping his position and organizing primary elections for candidates in Abia stressing that they are illegal, having been sacked by the courts three times.
Ukaegbu, therefore warned that every candidate buying forms and winning primary elections by court-dissolved executives on the party’s platform are wasting time and money.
He suggested that they should be law-abiding to set Abia APGA on the path of progress, but regretted that instead Ehiemere and the candidates chose to disobey court orders, which will affect the party negatively.
Ukaegbu said the consequences of the Court of Appeal judgement in the Owerri Judicial Division, on Thursday, April 7, 2022, on APPEAL NO. CA/OW/26/2019 is that he remains chairman of APGA in Abia.
He referenced Suit NO:HU/82/2018 judgement, given on Tuesday September 25, 2018 in the High Court of Abia State, in Umuahia Judicial Division and also another judgement in Obingwa Judicial Division as being in agreement.
In a copy of the judgement sighted by the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) Justice Rita Pemu of the Court of Appeals, while reading the Appeal against the decision of the High Court of Abia State, Obingwa Judicial Division ruled thus;
“The Appellant (APGA Abia State Chapter represented by Ehiemere) is no longer desirous of prosecuting this appeal.
“Moreso, since he had been served with processes in this matter by way of hearing notice and this motion before court was filed on the 9th of February 2021.
“Accordingly, this Appeal shall be and same is hereby dismissed. Appeal No. CA/OW/26/2019 is hereby deleted from the court’s records”.
Ukaegbu said that the Ehiemere-led APGA executive, having been sacked at the Appeal Court, they still have one layer of appeal which is the Supreme Court, but regretted that instead of using it they went into primaries.
He said that a High Court made an order in 2018 that he, Prince Nnanna Ukaegbu is the state Chairman of APGA in Abia and that APGA cannot do anything without his participation.
“They went back to the same court and got a stay of execution which is part of our problems in Nigeria.
“They got a stay against that order pending the Appeal. The supreme Court has said that a party that’s in disobedience of a court order cannot approach the court for any discretionary remedy.
“If you refused to obey one court order you can’t come back to the same court to ask for anything. However, the court granted them stay, which means the judgement is suspended to enable them go to appeal.”
Ukaegbu added that since the court of Appeal Owerri Division dismissed their appeal, the judgement of the High Court which declared him as the chairman of APGA in Abia still stands.
He further said that having fallen short of prosecuting their matter to the Supreme Court after Appeal Court struck out their matter, all the actions of the sacked executive in his absence remained null and void.
Ukaegbu called on the sacked APGA leadership in Abia to exhaust the last layer of the courts which is the Supreme Court to determine the fate of persons that are emerging as APGA candidates.
When NAN contacted Ehiemere, he promised to speak in the evening but has refused to take his calls or respond to text messages sent to his phone.
He later booked an appointment with our correspondent at Enitona Hotel on Monday morning but later allowed another person to answer his call saying that he had developed stomach upset without showing signs of speaking later on the matter.