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Akpabio heads to tribunal to reclaim mandate

Isaac Job, Uyo

The senator representing Akwa Ibom North West Senatorial District, Sen. Godswill Akpabio, said on Monday that he has submitted his petition to the election petitions tribunal sitting in Uyo, the state capital to seek the validation of the senatorial results.

This is coming days after the withdrawal of the case he earlier filed at the Federal High Court in Abuja, which sought to challenge the said senatorial results for the Akwa Ibom North West Senatorial District in the February 23 National Assembly election.

Sen. Akpabio’ media aide, Anietie Ekong, who disclosed this to newsmen in Uyo, said S. Ahmed (SAN) counsel to Akpabio submitted the petition on Saturday to the panel sitting at the state High Court complex, Metro Road, Uyo.

Senator Akpabio, who was the senatorial candidate for the district under the platform of the All Progressives Congress is seeking an order of the tribunal to upturn the victory of the Peoples Democratic Party candidate, Christopher Ekpenyong, following alleged electoral irregularities which he claimed characterized the said election.

The former Senate minority leader had while the election was ongoing, stormed the office of the Independent National Electoral Commission in Uyo, with complaints of alleged infractions and deliberate violations of the electoral laws and guidelines during the said senatorial election.

The INEC had while announcing the results declared Ekpeyong and his party, the PDP winner of the poll, having scored 118, 215 votes as against Akpabio, who secured only 83, 158 votes.

But, Sen. Akpabio claimed however, that “incontrovertible result sheets from the Independent National Electoral Commission office in Uyo, Akwa Ibo state showed different figures that I secured 138, 256 votes as against Ekpeyong’s 123, 843 votes.

“We are not satisfied with the result and outcome of that election, that is why the former governor and the party approached the election petition tribunal to ventilate their grievances as well as reclaim their stolen mandate,” Anietie said.