Governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress, APC, in Enugu State, Barrister Okey Ezea, yesterday, discontinued his case against Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi.
This followed the formal withdrawal of his appeal pending before the Court of Appeal, Enugu, through his counsel.
Enugu Governorship and House of Assembly Petitions Tribunal had dismissed his petition challenging the election of Governor Ugwuanyi of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, for lack of merit, but not satisfied by the decision, Ezea headed for the appeal court to continue the case.
But when the matter came up for hearing before the appellate court yesterday, Ezea through his counsel, Peter Ugwu, told the court that he had already filed a withdrawal notice before the court and requested the court to discontinue the appeal.
Counsel for the respondents, Paul Onyia, raised an objection to the application on ground that his clients were not consulted, urging the court to compel the appellant to pay N1 million for time wasted.
Respondents in the case were Governor Ugwuanyi, PDP; Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, and Enugu State resident electoral commissioner, among others.
The five-man justices of the appellate court led by Justice J.H. Sankey, after due consideration of submissions by the two parties, struck out the appeal and awarded N100,000 cost in favour of the respondents.
Efforts to speak with the appellant’s counsel proved abortive as he declined comment when approached by journalists to ascertain the reasons adduced by his client for withdrawing the appeal.
Ezea, who was not present in court, had contested the Enugu governorship seat four consecutive times on different political platforms but he has not been successful in all.
It has been speculated that Ezea who hails from Igboeze South Local Government Area of Enugu North Senatorial zone, was eyeing the ministerial slot of his party for Enugu State and those who spoke on the new development said his decision to withdraw the appeal could be to woo Governor Ugwuanyi to support his ambition. (National Mirror)