The National Assembly Elections Petitions Tribunal sitting in Asaba has nullified the election of Benson Igbakpa of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) as member representing Ethiope Federal Constituency in the House of Representatives.
The tribunal presided over by Justice A.M. Abubakar declared Halims Agoda of the All Progressives Congress (APC) as winner of the February 23, 2019 election.
Agoda had approached the tribunal to challenge the return of Igbakpa as the winner of the election by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), alleging gross irregularities.
The petitioner urged the tribunal to cancel the election or in the alternative declare him the winner for scoring highest number of valid votes cast.
Justice Abubakar after declaring Agoda winner, ordered INEC to withdraw Igbakpa’s certificate of return and issue a fresh one to Agoda.
However, the tribunal with Justice E.I. Ngene as chairman, upheld the election of the former Minority Leader of the House of Representatives and member representing Isoko constituency, Mr. Leo Ogor of the PDP.
Justice Ngene dismissed the petition filed by Mr. Joel Onowakpor of the APC challenging Ogor’s election, on the grounds that the petitioner was unable to prove allegations of electoral irregularities which he alleged in his petition.
The tribunal also upheld the election of Mr. Efe Afe (PDP), representing Okpe/Uvwie/Sapele constituency in the House of Representatives.
Justice Ngene dismissed the petition challenging Afe’s election which was filed by a former Speaker of the state House of Assembly, Monday Igbuya (APC) for lack competence.