Alex Otti, the Abia State Governor-elect, has dismissed reports purporting the nullification of his candidature in the March 18 governorship election in the state.
Earlier reports had said that the Federal High Court sitting in Kano, presided over by Justice M N Yunusa nullified his candidature and those of other candidates in Abia and Kano state elections.
Justice Yunusa was said to have declared that the candidates’ emergence in their respective party primaries did not comply with provisionsof the Electoral Act.
But speaking to THE WHISTLER on Friday, Otti’s lawyer, Chief Umeh Kalu SAN, described the development as “dead on arrival” as his client was not mentioned as a party to the suit filed before the Kano court by one Ibrahim Haruna Ibrahim against the Labour Party and the Independent National ElectoralCommission (INEC).
Kalu, a former Attorney General of Abia State, said: “The judgement is Inconsequential and dead on arrival. It is dead on arrival because Alex Otti is not a party to the suit. I have seen the judgement. You cannot make an order to anybody that is not a party before you.
“The issues they raised there are the same thing they raised at the tribunal. They said that the membership register of the Labour Party (LP) was not submitted 30 days before— and— all these issues were raised at the tribunal. Elections have come and gone; candidates accepted by INEC, elections conducted, and results declared.
“Any issue that has to do with that election, the only arena for it is the election tribunal. The issue they raised is a pre-election matter.
“But, even on the merit, the Kano case is dead on arrival. You cannot shave anybody’s head in his absence. Alex Otti’s name was not mentioned in that judgement even though I think he is the target.”
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