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Rep drags 3 Appeal Court justices to NJC

Posted by By GODWIN TSA Abuja on 2008/07/28 | Views: 1664 |

Rep drags 3 Appeal Court justices to NJC


Three Justices of the Court of Appeal, Benin Division, Helen Ogunwumiji, Ali Abubakar .B. Gumel and Chioma .E. Nwosu-Iheme have been petitioned by a member of the House of Representatives for Ndokwa/Ukwuani federal constituency of Delta State, Mrs. Mercy Alomona-Isei, whose certificate of return was nullified by the Appeal Tribunal.

Three Justices of the Court of Appeal, Benin Division, Helen Ogunwumiji, Ali Abubakar .B. Gumel and Chioma .E. Nwosu-Iheme have been petitioned by a member of the House of Representatives for Ndokwa/Ukwuani federal constituency of Delta State, Mrs. Mercy Alomona-Isei, whose certificate of return was nullified by the Appeal Tribunal.

In the petition to the National Judicial Council (NJC) with reference number BVO/COR/178/08 and dated July 23, 2008, the petitioner alleged that the Justices of the Appeal Tribunal compromised their oath of office while sitting on the appeal brought by her challenger, Mr. Charles Udogwu Onyekweli.
Specifically, it is her contention that as a person whose election and certificate of return was been challenged and sought to be nullified, she was not joined by the Appeal Tribunal as a party to the case even when she sought to be joined, contrary to the provisions of the Electoral Act, 2006.
The implication, according to her, is that she was denied fair hearing, as the opportunity was not accorded to her to defend her mandate by the appeal tribunal, which ruled, "that it was not necessary to have even applied to join her."

Besides, it is her contention in the petition filed by her counsel, Mr. Victor Okangbe that the appeal was determined on false and misleading issues formulated by the appellant without any rebuttal from her.
It is also the case of the petitioner that the Appeal Tribunal premised the judgment nullifying her certificate of return on the judgment of a Federal High Court per Justice Abimbola Ogie which had long been appealed against before the Court of Appeal, Abuja division in appeal no: FHC/ABJ/CS/206/07.
Justice Ogie had in the said judgment delivered on May 9, 2007, in the suit filed by Mr. Onyekweli, held that his substitution was null and void having not been made with cogent and verifiable reasons as envisaged in section 34 [2] of the Electoral Act, 2006.

In the said appeal, the appellant, Mrs. Alomona-Isei had prayed for an order setting aside the entire judgment of the Federal High Court on grounds that it was a judgment given in error.
The petition further accused the Appeal Tribunal justices of fallacious and deliberate fabrication of facts and occurrences to deny her justice by holding on page 19 of the judgment that the Federal High Court decision came days before the conduct of election and that it was not appealed by her.

To the contrary, the petitioner said the judgment of the Federal High Court was delivered on May 9, 2007, 18 clear days after the National Assembly election, which took place on April 21, 2007.

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