Abia Politics : The battle of God’s Own State has Reached a Crescendo, with APGA and PDP putting up Legal fireworks at the Apex court

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By: Oby Ndukwe 

The PDP is represented by the sitting Governor, Dr Okezie Ikpeazu while APGA is led by Dr Alex Otti. In spite of winning the elections sustained by the Election Petition Tribunal, Ikpeazu, protege of former Governor T. A. Orji lost out at the Appeal Court which had in a unanimous decision declared that Otti and not Ikpeazu was the actual winner of the governorship election.

While both parties have approached the Supreme Court as the law demands to ascertain the right occupant of the seat of power in Umuahia, several issues may yet affect the determination of the Appeal and the Cross Appeal.
In the Court of public opinion, one of the two contenders happens to be a good man in a wrong party, while the other one is a bad man in a good party.
One may yet be suffering rejection or facing stiff opposition because of the factors that led to his emergence as the candidate of his party, while the other is rejected by the people he sought to identify with as his own.
The irony of fate here is that both Ikpeazu and Otti are from the Ngwa extraction of the state. While Otti hopes to be declared Governor by the apex Court, he has called for the disenfranchisement of the Ngwa people in the three contentious LGAs by urging the Court to nullify all the votes cast in Obioma ngwa, Isiala ngwa and Osisioma ngwa, in order to have an edge over Ikpeazu, who incidentally happens to be a full fledged Ngwa man with these three LGAs as his strongholds and immediate constituency.
If the Supreme Court upholds the now controversial judgment of the Appeal Court, by cancelling all the lawful and unlawful votes cast including that of Ikpeazu, the candidate, has justice been served? Who really is the offender here in actuality, INEC or Ikpeazu and his party? Who in any case was responsible for the alleged inflated figures, if found to be true? Should a candidate be punished for the atrocities of the electoral body?
The proper thing to be done to ensure that those who graciously filed out in spite of the threats to life and unprecedented violence to cast their votes are not disenfranchised, is for a rerun to be ordered in those three LGAs.
I doubt if Otti would be an advocate of such maltreatment of the people he calls his, the Ngwa people, to be denied of their rights to be part of the election of a governor from the Ngwa extraction.
Again, if Otti is merely an Ngwa Indigene for political expediency, then natural justice and equity demands that the rotation and zoning of the governorship position must move to the Senatorial zone, Abia South, which is yet to produce a governor since the creation of Abia State.
But sentiments are not points of law. Ikpeazu who represents the new face of the struggle for the political emancipation of Ngwa land may urge the Supreme Court to go beyond his prayers and the arguments proffered by both parties, in order to set another landmark judgement where Justice would not only be done but must be seen to be done!

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