The National and State Assemblies Elections Petitions Tribunal in Umuahia, Abia State on Monday upheld the election of Chief Mao Ohuabunwa as the senator for Abia North Senatorial District.
The Chairman of the tribunal, Justice Adeniyi Onigbanjo, delivered judgment in the consolidated petitions filed by former Governor Orji Kalu and Chief David Onuoha-Bourdex of the Progressive People’s Alliance and All Progressives Grand Alliance respectively.
Onigbanjo said the petitioners failed to prove their case beyond reasonable doubt.
The tribunal dismissed Kalu’s petition on the grounds of incompetence, while that of Onuoha-Bourdex was dismissed because he could not prove the allegations of falsification and alteration of results conclusively.
Onigbanjo said Kalu’s petition failed to achieve its purpose because it was wrongly built on the foundation that the result of the election had not been declared or was declared by a wrong person.
He said although there were proven cases of falsifications, alterations as well as inflation and deflation of figures on both sides, the tribunal went ahead to compute the result for the candidates.
Onigbanjo said that at the end of the computation, PDP scored 48,738 votes, while APGA scored 28,210 votes.
He therefore declared Ohuabunwa the winner of the poll, having scored the highest number of votes.
In his reaction, Onuoha-Bourdex said that he would appeal against the judgment, describing it as “shocking”.
The counsel to Ohuabunwa, Mike Onyeka, described the judgment as victory for the people and the judiciary.