Confusion In Abia As Ikpeazu, Ogah Lay Claim To Governorship Seat

Abia State descended into confusion on Thursday following the insistence of Sampson Ogah that he should be sworn in as governor of the state to replace the incumbent, Okezie Ikpeazu, who was sacked by the Federal High Court on Monday.

Mr. Ogah had left Abuja for Umuahia Thursday after he was issued a Certificate of Return by the Independent National Electoral Commission for his swearing in, expected to be performed by the Chief Judge of the state.

But as he was travelling to Abia, Mr. Okezie obtained an injunction from the High Court of Abia State stopping the Chief Judge of the State, the President of the Customary Court of Appeal and any other judicial officer from swearing in Mr. Ogah as governor.

Both Messrs Okezie Ikpeazu and Ogah are members of the Peoples Democratic Party.

The order made by Justice Chibuzo Ahuchaogu of the Abia High Court said among other things, “Upon this motion ex-parte pursuant to section 143 (1) & (2) of the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended) and pending the determination of the motion on notice, after hearing O.O Nkume, counsel to the applicant.”

Apart from the court order, Mr. Ikpeazu also declared Friday and Monday as public holidays in “honour of a former Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ojo Maduekwe, who died on Wednesday”.

The federal government has already declared Tuesday and Wednesday public holidays to mark the Ed-il-Fitr.

The implication is that the judiciary in Abia State will not open for business until Thursday, July 7, making it impossible for Mr. Ogah to immediately challenge the injunction granted Mr. Ikpeazu.

Credit: PremiumTimes