Alex Otti, brushed off the news of the nullification of his election as the new Governor of Abia State, urging residents not to panic, as he would definitely be inaugurated on May 29, despite the evil plot of his traducers and enemies of democracy trying to truncate the will of the people.
Otti, was responding to a report disqualifying him and other members of the Labour Party in Abia and Kano states from participating in the 2023 general elections, held on February 25 and March 18, on the grounds of non-compliance with the provisions of the 2022 electoral act.
Justice Mohammed Nasir Yanusa of the Federal High Court, Kano, had in the suit No FHC/KN/CS/107/2023 filed by Mr Ibrahim Haruna Ibrahim against the Labour Party and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), ruled that the failure of the LP to submit its membership register to the INEC within 30 days before their primaries renders the process invalid.
“The party that has not complied with the provisions of the electoral act cannot be said to have a candidate in an election and cannot be declared winner of an election; this being so, the votes credited to the 1st defendant is a wasted vote,” he said.
But in a quick riposte, Otti, who reacted through Ferdinand Ekeoma, his spokesman, maintained that preparations for his inauguration on May 29 would proceed as planned, adding that the plots of those opposed to democracy would not prevent the people of Abia from having their way and that the said judgment held no water and stood on nothing.
“It has no basis, and nobody should bother about it. If they had a case why didn’t they file it in Abia? Even the one they filed in Kano, they intentionally did not want to join us. The judge knows that, and did not pass any verdict on us because Otti was not joined,” he said, explaining that that similar cases had already been filed against two Labour Party House of Representatives candidates in Abia but were all dismissed even by the Supreme Court.
“The court had ruled on a similar suit before the election and dismissed it. A similar suit was filed against two of our Representative candidates – Obi Aguocha, and Ginger Onwusibe which was abjudicated up to the Supreme Court.”