Okorocha Drags INEC To Court Over Certificate Of Return

Governor Rochas Okorocha of Imo state has dragged Independent National Electoral Commission ( INEC ) to court for refusing to recognise him as winner of election in west senatorial district.

In a suit that was filed at the federal high court in Abuja, Okorocha asked the court to compel INEC to issue him the certificate of return having been declared winner of the election.

Returning officer for Imo west senatorial election, Francis Ibeawuchi, had announced Okorocha as winner of the poll.

But the electoral umpire declined to give Okorocha a certificate of return because Ibeawuchi said he declared Okorocha winner under duress.

In the suit which had INEC as the sole defendant, the governor argued that he had been declared authentic winner of the election and so, ought to be given certificate of return.

He asked the court to rule that INEC has no power to withhold his certificate of return and to grant an order mandating the commission to issue it to him.

When the case came up on Wednesday, Jones Onyeriri and Osita Izunaso, candidates of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) in the election respectively, were included as second and third defendants.

Taiwo Taiwo, the judge presiding over the case, directed the plaintiff to amend the originating processes and subsequently adjourned till April 5 for hearing.

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