- The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has been urged to issue certificate of return to Iduma Igariwe and Fred Udogwu of Ebonyi state
- The opposition party, PDP said the call became necessary following Monday, March 21, court's ruling that struck out the application for a stay of execution by the sacked governor of Ebonyi state David Umahi
- According to the party, the chief judge of Ebonyi state should immediately swear in both Iduma Igariwe and Fred Udogwu as governor and deputy governor respectively
Following the recent ruling by the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja on the application of stay of executive filed by Ebonyi state governor, David Umahi, the Peoples Democratic Party has asked the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to do the right thing.
Ebonyi: Falana reacts to Ekwo’s judgment sacking Umahi, deputy, others, says votes belong to political parties
The call by the PDP was contained in a statement signed by Debo Ologunagba, the national publicity secretary of the party and seen by Legit.ng.
In the statement, Ologunagba charged the electoral body to immediately and without any further delay, issue certificates of return to Iduma Igariwe and Fred Udogwu as governor and deputy governor of Ebonyi state respectively.
Ologunagba said that the call for INEC to do the right thing is in furtherance of the order of the court refusing to grant a stay of execution to Umahi and his deputy, Kelechi Igwe over their removal from office by the court.
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He submitted that INEC is bound to issue certificates of a return immediately to Igariwe and Udogwu as governor and deputy governor pursuant to the provision of Section 287 (3) of the 1999 constitution as amended.
The constitution stated that:
"The decisions of the Federal High Court, National Industrial Court, a High Court and of all other courts established by this constitution shall be enforced in any part of the Federation by all authorities and persons, and by other courts of law with subordinate jurisdiction to that of the Federal High Court, National Industrial Court, a High Court and those other courts, respectively."
Another ultimatum to Ebonyi state chief judge
Ologunagba affirmed that in this regard, the PDP also demands that the chief judge of Ebonyi state, upon the issuance of Certificates of Return by INEC proceed to swear in Iduma Igariwe and Fred Udogwu as governor and deputy governor of Ebonyi state respectively.
He noted that this is absolutely necessary to prevent the existence of a vacuum in the government and governance of Ebonyi state as Messers Umahi and Igwe can no longer exercise the functions of the office of governor and deputy governor of the state.
"The PDP commends the judiciary for its courage in defending the Constitution as well as the will of the people of Ebonyi State as expressed in their votes for the PDP in the 2019 governorship election.
"Our Party also congratulates the people of Ebonyi state for the restoration of their mandate and urged them to remain united under the PDP as we forge ahead in our mission to 'Rescue and Rebuild' our country from the rudderless APC administration."
Anxiety as INEC reveals when it will act on court order sacking David Umahi as Ebonyi governor
INEC said it has not concluded deliberations on the court judgement that sacked David Umahi of Ebonyi state, his deputy, Kelechi Igwe, and 16 lawmakers.
The electoral body said it had not reached a conclusion on the subject as well as other legal matters filed recently.
Festus Okoye, INEC's spokesman, said the commission will deliberate on the matter next week after which the commission would make its decision public.
PDP Rep member declares himself Ebonyi governor
Meanwhile, following his nomination by the PDP, Igariwe, said in the eye of the law, he is the governor of Ebonyi state since Tuesday, March 8, when the Federal High Court, Abuja sacked Umahi.
Speaking with journalists in Abuja on Thursday, March 10, Igariwe said that by the order made by Justice Ekwo, Umahi ceased to be governor of Ebonyi state.
Igariwe wondered why days after the judgment Governor Umahi and his deputy still parade themselves as if they still occupy those offices.