The National Assembly Election Petition Tribunal convened in Umuahia, Abia State, issued a ruling on Monday, unseating two representatives from the Labour Party (LP). Among those removed is Ibe Okwara, the incumbent member representing the Arochukwu/Ohafia Federal Constituency.
In the aftermath of the February 25, 2023, National Assembly election in the constituency, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) had initially declared Ibe Okwara of the LP as the winner. However, Dan Okeke of the All Progressives Congress (APC) contested the outcome, expressing dissatisfaction and asserting that the LP candidate’s victory did not align with legal provisions.
After several months of legal proceedings, a three-member panel led by its Chairman, Justice Adeyinka Aderegbegbe, granted Dan Okeke’s plea. The tribunal determined that Ibe Okwara’s election did not conform to the stipulations of the Electoral Act. Consequently, the APC candidate was declared the victor of the poll, and INEC was instructed to revoke the certificate of return previously issued to Ibe Okwara and instead grant one to Dan Okeke.
Furthermore, in a parallel case heard by another National Assembly Election Petitions Tribunal seated in Umuahia, Emeka Nnamani, the incumbent Labour Party (LP) representative for Abia North/South Federal Constituency in the House of Representatives, was also unseated. The three-member tribunal adjudged Alex Ikwechegh of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) as the rightful winner of the election.