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Akpabio Sacked as APC Senatorial Candidate By Appeal Court

The Court of Appeal in Abuja has overturned the decision of the Federal High Court in Abuja to remove Godswill Akpabio as the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate for Akwa Ibom North West Senatorial District.

On Monday, a three-judge panel presided over by Justice Danlami Senchi ruled that Akpabio failed to file a proof of arguments within the time frame specified by the rules.

The panel also ruled that Akpabio, as an APC presidential candidate, could not participate in the party’s valid primary held on May 27 and overseen by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), which produced Udom Ekpoudom as a candidate.

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On September 22, a Federal High Court in Abuja ordered INEC to reinstall Senator Akpabio as APC’s candidate, the candidate nominated by the party at the party’s second primary on June 9.

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The lower court had ordered that INEC accept the former Niger Delta Minister as the APC flagbearer.

The court also directed INEC to publish Akpabio’s name as the APC senatorial candidate for Akwa Ibom North/West senatorial district in 2023, citing the Commission’s illegality in refusing to accept and publish the former governor’s name when it was presented to it by the APC as its candidate.

Justice Emeka Nwite, who gave the decision, found that Akpabio was lawfully nominated as the APC’s Akwa – Ibom North/West Senatorial District candidate from the party’s National Working Committee (NWC) primary on June 9, 2022.

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The trial Judge chastised INEC for choosing to oversee an illegal branch of the party led by Augustine Ekanem’s May 27 primary over the allowed June 9 primary conducted by the APC NWC.

 

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