Akpan Etukudoh Asare
The Independent National Electoral Commission has appealed to the Election Petition Tribunal panel two sitting in Calabar to dismiss the petition filed by one Obo Bassey Mkpanam.
Mkpanam had challenged the victory of eventual winner of the election Daniel Effiong Asuquo, alias Dansuki and others for the Akamkpa/Biase state constituency in the state House of Assembly and his exclusion in the race.
Counsels, A. Lazarus and Eme Udom who represented the second respondent, INEC, prayed the tribunal to adopt the Address by the counsel to first respondent, the winner of the election, Daniel Asuquo.
Barrister Lazarus said the legal authorities cited by the counsel to the petitioner, Ikoro Ikoro do not in anyway support their petition.
Mba Ukweni, SAN, leading five other lawyers for first respondent had severally admitted the same facts tendered in earlier document and in their written address that does not impact on the issue at hand.
With such document, he said there was no basis for the petition in the first place.
He referee the tribunal to several judgments and to concur with their position that the petition be dismissed, adding that not having a candidate in the state House of Assembly election was due to the internal crisis that plagued the APC.
He maintained that the petitioner was never excluded from the election but that their party had no candidate.
He said the APC matter was subsisting st the Supreme Court and cited section 221 of the constitution and emphasised that e petition was hollow and was an attempt to reprobate and Approbate.
However Ikoro, representing the petitioner, said they had submitted a consolidated final address which details facts in point of law and grievances.
He also cited some law authorities and asked the tribunal to grant her client his prayers.
But the Chairman of the tribunal, Justice A. A. Babawale having attentively listed to all the presentations and arguments, said she was reserving judgment till a future date which would be communicated to the parties concerned.