The Ebonyi South Labour Party senatorial candidate, Linus Okorie, has rejected the judgement of the Election Petition Tribunal in favour of the state’s former governor, David Umahi, of the All Progressives Congress.
The Ebonyi State National and State Assembly Election Petition Tribunal, sitting in Abuja, had on Friday, unanimous dismissed Okorie’s petition for failure to prove his allegation of corruption and noncompliance with the electoral law as amended.
The three members of the Tribunal unanimously declared Umahi, the current Minister of Works, winner of the 2023 Ebonyi South senatorial election.
However, the News Agency of Nigeria reported that Okorie disagreed with the Tribunal’s judgement in a statement signed and made available to journalists in Abakaliki, the capital of Ebonyi State.
He stressed that the judgement didn’t reflect the evidence presented, insisting that the minimum expected in the circumstances of that election was to declare it inconclusive and order a re-run.
Okorie vowed to appeal the judgement, adding he would not allow the people’s will to be truncated.
He said, “I disagree with that decision, even as I respect it. I disagree with the decision because it neither served justice, reflected the evidence presented, the electoral law, nor the expressed will of the electorate of Ebonyi South.
“Whatever motivated the Tribunal to so flagrantly ignore the weighty evidence before it, especially certified true copies of INEC results and the unambiguous provisions of Section 137 of the Electoral Act 2022 in the circumstances, is best known to them.
“I have mandated my lawyers to appeal the judgement. This truncation of the will of the people, commenced by INEC in Ebonyi South, shall not be allowed to stand.”