Tribunal sacks Enugu Assembly member, orders rerun

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The National and State Assembly Election Petitions Tribunal sitting in Enugu on Friday nullified the election of Okey Mbah of the Peoples Democratic Party as the winner of the March 18 House of Assembly poll for the Nkanu East State Constituency.

The tribunal also ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission to conduct a rerun election in the affected polling units within 90 days.

Mbah is representing Governor Peter Mbah constituency at the State House of Assembly.

The Labour Party candidate, Mr Okwudiri Nnaji, had petition the tribunal, challenging the declaration of Mbah as the winner of the election, citing over-voting and other electoral irregularities.

Delivering judgement in the petition, a three-member panel of the tribunal led by Justice Adie Onyebueke, nullified the election and ordered a rerun in some polling units in Ugbawka and Owo wards where election results were inflated in favour of the 2nd and 3rd respondents.

The court held that the election and return made by INEC on March 18 for the Nkanu East constituency fell short of all indices of a credible, fair, and transparent election on the condition that the said election was marred by gross substantial non-compliance with the Electoral Act.

The tribunal held that the number of votes was higher than the number of registered and accredited voters in those areas and faulted the return by INEC.

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