A Federal High Court sitting in Owerri Monday sacked Ugonna Ozurigbo, a House of Representative member-elect for Nkwerre/Nwangele/Njaba/Isu federal constituency of Imo State.
The judge, Justice P.A. Rigime, also ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission to issue a Certificate of Return to Kingsley Echendu the candidate of the People’s Democratic Party.
Neither PDP nor its candidate was a party to the suit.
The suit, filed by Harrison Nwadike an All Progressives Congress member, prayed the court to declare him as the party’s rightful candidate.
Nwadike contended that automatic tickets were unknown to the Constitution.
Justice P.A. Rigime agreed with Nwadike that automatic tickets were unknown to law. Hence, Rigime declared Ozurigbo’s candidacy illegal and ordered INEC to issue a Certificate of Return to Echendu.
The petitioner who was discontented with the judgement said it was wrong for the court to have declared the PDP candidate the lawful winner of the general election.
He said he will challenge the court order.
Meanwhile, th outgoing Governor of Imo State, Owelle Rochas Okorocha has advised Vice President Yemi Osinbajo to distance himself from the national chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Adams Oshiomhole, and Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna State.
He gave the warning while expressing displeasure over the purportedly unfair manner he is being treated by the APC because of the alleged machinations of the two men.
Okorocha, who has been at loggerheads with Oshiomhole, accused him of being behind INEC’s decision to deny him the Certificate of Return after contesting in the Imo West senatorial district election.
According to a video currently trending on social media, Okorocha pointedly told the National Economic Council, NEC, comprising of 36 state governors and headed by Osinbajo: “Our greatness as a nation is not as a result of our population. Neither is it because of the mighty military nor the crude oil that we have or our political parties or what we practice.
“Our greatness lies in the family spirit with which you have handled the affairs of this NEC (National Economic Council).
“I feel like a member of a family when I look at my left and right. Even the worse of them like the Oshiomholes and El-rufais. Even with these I still feel as a member of the feel.
“These people I have mentioned, Mr. Chairman, I do not why you share one thing in common with them. May I request you to distance yourself henceforth from them.”