Says Ogah not eligible to be Abia Governor
A Federal High Court sitting in Owerri yester­day ruled that Dr Uche Ogah, who was recently presented with a Certificate of Return by the Independent Nation­al Electoral Commission (INEC) as the governor of Abia State, is not eligible to govern the state.
According to the court “Ogah is not eligible to en­joy the outcome of the PDP primary because he reject­ed the result of the primary”.
The court also dis­missed a suit filed by Chief Friday Nwosu, seeking to remove the Abia State governor, Okezie Ikpeazu for allegedly presenting a forged tax certificate to his party, the Peoples Demo­cratic Party (PDP).
Nwosu, a governorship aspirant on the platform of the PDP during December 8, 2014 primary had ap­proached the court pray­ing that he be declared Abia governor on the grounds that Ikpeazu was not qual­ified to represent the PDP during 2015 election.
Delivering judgment on the suit, the presiding Judge, Lewis Allagoa, stat­ed that the plaintiff through his counsel failed to justify his claim that the tax certif­icate submitted by Ikpeazu was forged.
Allagoa explained that “aside looking at docu­ments in litigation, proving a forged matter requires ad­equate clarification and ad­ditional proof by experts be­fore a forgery claim can be established by law.”
On the claim that Ikpea­zu was not properly taxed in the year 2011, the court not­ed that it was not the posi­tion of Ikpeazu, but that of the tax official to determine how he could be taxed.
The court maintained that since the issuing Au­thority (Abia State Board of Internal Revenue) was not joined in the suit nor an ex­pert engaged to ascertain the authenticity of the doc­ument, it would be unlaw­ful for the court to rule in favour of the Plaintiff.
On the third relief sought by the plaintiff, seek­ing to dismiss the claim to the governorship position by Dr Uche Ogah, the court ruled in favour of the plain­tiff, noting ``Ogah is not el­igible to enjoy the outcome of the PDP primary because he rejected the result of the primary”.
Allagoa had earlier fa­voured Nwosu on two oth­er grounds; that the origi­nating summons filed was properly filed and that the Federal High Court has ju­risdiction to hear the pre-election suit.
Reacting to the judg­ment, Dr Livy Uzoukwu (SAN), J.T.U. Nnodum and Theo Nkire who represent­ed INEC, PDP and Ikpeazu respectively described the judgment as a landmark.