The Court of Appeal, Abuja has announced Valentine Oziigbo as the authentic candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in the November 6 governorship election in Nigeria’s southeastern Anambra State.
The Appellate Court in a unanimous decision also set aside the decision of Justice A. O. Nwabunike of a High Court of Anambra State which had earlier declared Senator Ugochukwu Uba as PDP’s candidate.
President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Monica Dongban-Mensem while delivering the judgement avered that the primary election held at the professor Dora Akunyuli Women Center, Awka, which produced Ozigbo as PDP candidate, was conducted in line with the law and guidelines of the party.
She described the parallel primary held at Saint Paul University as an aberration and berated Justice Nwabunike for sitting as an appellate court over the judgment of Justice Adeniyi of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) High Court.
Justice Dongban-Mensem urged INEC not to be distracted while preparing for the election. According to her, the Commission should wait for the decision of the final court in the land and should not hurriedly rush to comply with the judgment of a trial court.
The panel took turns to take swipes on lawyers who enable litigants to abuse the court’s processes, stressing that relevant bodies like the NJC and NBA must take decisive actions against culprits.
The Court accordingly awarded a cost of N10 million against Uba in favour of Ozigbo.