Today the Court of Appeal sitting in Calabar gave judgement in the appeals filed against the unanimous judgement of the election petition tribunal in favour of Senator Bassey Albert Akpan and Hon. Unyime Idem of Uyo Senatorial District and Ukanafun/Oruk Anam Federal Constituency respectively . In their Lordships’ considered judgment they dismissed the two appeals as lacking in merit.
Specifically , the Court held that the petition against the election of Hon. Unyime Idem was filed clearly out of time and therefore grossly incompetent, robbing the court of jurisdiction. In the case of Senator Bassey Albert, the court held that the petitioner was not able to prove any of the allegations made against the Respondents and therefore the petition could not stand on nothing. It further awarded cost to the respondents in the sum of N50,000 each.
By our the prescription of our legal architecture, this is the climax of the post electoral tussle for these cases and we can safely say CONGRATULATIONS Hon. Idems and Senator Albert. We must single out the Justices of the Court of Appeal who sat in those cases for their forthrightness and sense of honourable responsibility. They have against all visible pressures from acclaimed “powerful men” done justice according to law and like we all know, the heavens are intact, nothing is falling. We can only pray that the infinite continues to expand their mental capacity and increase their ethical depth as they discharge their duties.
We extend an olive branch to the two candidates who have come to the end of the legal road, post elections, to join hands with the winners and push for better representation of their constituencies. Both of them (Hon. Emmanuel Ukoette and Hon. Bassey Etim) being people whose political growth and foundation were provided by our party, should feel free, if they choose, to consider a homeward journey back to their political base. Our hands will be open to receive them. They should call to mind always the wordings of that popular song, “ no matter where you go, remember the road that will take you home”.
We commend the leader of our party at the State, HE Udom Emmanuel for his unflinching support to all our candidates throughout the entire period. The Legal department of our party headed by the very amiable and workaholic State Legal Adviser, Goddy Umoh Esq is hereby commended.
The State Executive Committee of the party, under the able leadership of Obong Paul Ekpo remains unwaveringly committed to the defence of the mandate freely given to our candidates at the ballot. We thank our numerous supporters for their abiding faith in our political platform.
Truly, while the opposition were boasting of a new tribunal to sit on matters that had been adjourned for judgment, the Court through the justices of the Appeal court, came to the rescue – this is a clear manifestation of the rule of law not the rule of man, or the rule of money .
To God alone be the glory.
Comrade Ini Ememobong
State Publicity Secretary
Peoples Democratic Party
Akwa Ibom State