Why Court of Appeal sacked Akpabio as APC senatorial candidate in Akwa Ibom

The Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja on Monday evening disqualified former Minister of Niger Delta, Godswill Akpabio, from contesting as All Progressives Congress senatorial candidate representing Akwa-Ibom North/West District in the 2023 General Elections.

NewsWireNGR reports that an earlier judgement by the Federal High Court on September 15, 2022, ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission to recognise Akpabio as an APC Senatorial candidate.

The court ordered the electoral umpire to accept and publish Akpabio’s name as APC senatorial candidate for Akwa Ibom North/West senatorial district in 2023.

In the judgment, Justice Emeka Nwite held that INEC acted illegally by refusing to accept and publish Akpabio’s name after it was sent by APC.

However, the appellate court has set aside the judgement.

A three-member panel of justices led by Justice Danlami Senchi ruled that Akpabio failed to file a proof of arguments within the time provided by the court rules.

The panel further held that Akpabio, being a presidential aspirant of the APC, could not participate in the valid primary of the party held on May 27 and monitored by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), which produced Udom Ekpoudom as a candidate.

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