The independent national electoral commission INEC today 30th June,2016 issued a certificate of return to PDP member, Uche Ogah (left), following an order by the Abuja Federal High Court on Monday June 27th, mandating INEC to immediately issue Certificate of Return to Uche Ogah who came second at the PDP primaries in the state in 2014.
Uche Ogah had dragged the former Abia State governor, Okezie Ikpeazu, before the Abuja Federal High Court , arguing that he presented false tax clearance during the party primaries. The presiding judge, Justice Okon Abang, said that on the account of fake tax returns during the primaries, Ikpeazu was never qualified to run in the PDP primaries as a governorship candidate. He nullified Ikpeazu’s election and ordered INEC to issue a certificate of return to Ogah.
Meanwhile Gov, Okezie Ikpeazu has released a statement reacting to the development, According to him, he remains the Governor of the state since he has filed an appeal against the ruling.
Read his statement below
I have received with concern, report of the purported issuance of Certificate of Return to Mr. Uche Ogah by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), as governor of Abia State, despite dependency of a notice of appeal and motion for stay of the orders made by Justice Okon Abang of the Federal High Court, Abuja.
Our laws are clear on this matter. No one may be issued with a certificate of return let alone be sworn in as governor, when there is a subsisting appeal and application for stay.
I want to appeal to Abians to remain calm and law abiding in the face of this provocation, unless and until the appellant courts have conclusively resolve the appeal, the status remains, I am still the Governor of Abia State.
Dr Okezie Ikpeazu
Governor, Abia State
Ikpeazu has since filed an appeal against the ruling.