As the battle rages on in Okigwe, over who the authentic candidate of the All Progressives Congress APC, in the Okigwe Senate Bye-Election is, another matter is before the Supreme Court at the moment, to determine who the authentic candidate of the APC in the 2019 General Elections was.
A lawyer from Anambra State, Philip Umeadi SAN, has approached the Supreme Court, in an effort to make sense out of two Supreme Court rulings, which is gradually looking like what is happening in Okigwe Senate today.
In one ruling, the Supreme Court disqualified Uche Nwosu, for being the candidate of the APC, and the Action Allinace AA, in the 2019 General Elections.
Even a layman understands that by the disqualification of the candidate, the party has no candidate.
The question now begs to be answered, how did Hope Uzodinma become governor of Imo State, since he wasn’t ruled by the Supreme Court as the authentic candidate of party, granted that APC won the election?
This is a question that seems to have gotten the Supreme Court in a pickle, and put Hope Uzodinma on edge. Even the delay in the case, have started raising eyebrows, as political observers are of the view that the delay might be sponsored, to afford the Court or Uzodinma a way, to manipulate the outcome.
But it’s a clear cut case.
The same is playing out in Okigwe, where the party seems to have two candidates affirmed and disqualified by the courts at the same time.
With the dual judgements disqualifying both candidates on the eve of the election, without any of them appealing them, or getting a stay of execution on the judgements before the election, it is assumed that the party did not participate in the election as there was no candidate.
The Araraume camp, had claimed that they appealed for a stay of execution, and if it was granted before the election, then Senator Ifeanyi Araraume is the candidate of the party, until Frank Ibezim can appeal the ruling of the High Court banning him from contesting public office, or a Supreme Court ruling sacks Araraume.
But if the stay was not granted, then it is clear cut that the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party PDP, Chief Emmanuel Okewulonu, should be declared winner of the contest.
These are all clear cut matters.
Twice, the APC in Imo State, through their internal scrambling for power, have created legal impasse for the party, that threatens even to ridicule the country’s judiciary.
Any ruling by the Supreme Court on the Hope Uzodinma matter, that doesn’t see him out of office, and reinstating the PDP Candidate, Rt Hon Emeka Ihedioha, would certainly raise a lot of eyebrows within and outside the country, and may question the integrity of the Supreme Court, unless they can come with a strong argument that will overrule the judgement on Uche Nwosu, and uphold the one that sacked Ihedioha.
With the way things are going, the Imo State APC may affect the Nigerian judicial system in way that could affect future rulings and belief in the courts.