Tribunal affirms election of Benue APC Rep

Court gavel

The National/State Assembly Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Makurdi has affirmed the election of Rep. Philip Agbese of the All Progressives Congress (APC) for the Ado/Okpokwu/Ogbadibo Federal Constituency of Benue.

Delivery the judgement on Saturday in Makurdi, Justice Emeka Dada in a unanimous judgement dismissed the petitions of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the Labour Party (LP) candidates challenging the election.

Dada said the PDP’s petition was faulty because unlawful exclusion was not a sufficient ground for election petition and it was a pre-election matter.

He said that the petitioner was unable to prove the case of noncompliance and therefore dismissed it.

Dada said that the LP candidate, Ralph Ogbodo failed to discharge the burden of proof of non compliance and other irregularities complained of thereby contravening the position of the electoral act.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the two candidates had dragged Agbese to the tribunal challenging his victory and declaration by INEC.

In their separate petitions they prayed among other things, an order voiding the return of the respondent as the lawful winner of the election.

Speaking after the judgement, Adetunji Oso, who appeared for Agbese told journalists that “justice has been done” and that Agbese would continue to discharge his duties as the duly elected member representing Ado/Okpokwu/Ogbadibo Federal Constituency.(NAN)