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We’re going to mainstream APGA in national politics – Soludo

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Chukwuma Soludo: We’re going to mainstream APGA in national politics
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We’re going to mainstream APGA in national politics – Soludo

Hope of former Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Professor Chukwuma Charles Soludo, to become the next Governor of Anambra state becomes brighter on Monday, as Justice Charles Okay of Awka High Court 2 reinstated him as the authentic candidate of the All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA) in the November 6, 2021 Governorship Election.

The governor-elect of Anambra state, Chukwuma Soludo, has pledged that the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) is “going to work very hard” to drive the party’s popularity in other parts of the country.

Soludo spoke in a chat with Arise TV on Wednesday.

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The former CBN governor was, on Tuesday, announced the winner of the Anambra governorship election.

He polled 112,229 votes on the platform APGA to defeat his two major rivals — Valentine Ozigbo of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) who got 53,807 votes, and Andy Uba of the All Progressives Congress (APC) who secured 43,285 votes.

However, APGA, having ruled Anambra for 15 consecutive years, has not been able to establish a foothold in other parts of the country.

Speaking on this, Soludo said the party should not be categorised as a regional party, adding that it will soon spread across that country.

He said APGA will “mainstream our neo-progressivism” and get Nigerians to buy into the ideas of the party and “begin to flood into the party”.

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He said APGA will leverage on its bases in some parts of the country to build a “systematic approach to getting the rest of the country”.

We’re going to mainstream APGA in national politics – Soludo

“AGPA happens to be the first progressive party that was registered in Nigeria. And its name says it all, All Progressives Grand Alliance. It starts in 2002 before others started adding progressives to their names. The first election that it won happened to be in the southeast. Just Like Action Congress (AC), the first election that they won happened to be in the southwest, and (some people) began to see it as Yoruba party — forgetting that its first presidential candidate was Atiku Abubakar,” the governor-elect said.

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“Ditto for APGA the first election it won was in Anambra and people began to have that toga. We are going to work very hard to mainstream our neo-progressivism and we’re the ones with the neo-progressive ideas, mandate, agenda. The moment Nigerians begin to see with clarity where the uniqueness of APGA and why the APGA agenda, people from all walks are going to begin to flood into the party.

“We’ve won elections sporadically in some parts of the country but we’re now going to build on that to really have a systematic approach to getting the rest of the country.”

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Anambra Election: Court Dismisses Suit Challenging Soludo’s Victory

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Anambra Election: Court Dismisses Suit Challenging Soludo’s Victory
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Anambra Election: Court Dismisses Suit Challenging Soludo’s Victory

A Federal High Court in Abuja on Wednesday dismissed a suit seeking disqualification of former Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria CBN, Prof Charles Chukwuma Soludo, as the governor-elect of Anambra State.

Justice Taiwo Oladipupo Taiwo in a judgment delivered in a suit instituted by two voters in Anambra, Adindu Valentine and Chukwuebuka Egwudike, described the suit as frivolous, irritating, baseless, and lacking in merit.

He accused the two plaintiffs of seeking to use the court as a tool to scuttle democracy. He awarded a punitive cost of N2 million against them to be paid to Soludo and his deputy, Onyeka Ibezim.

The plaintiffs – Adindu Valentine and Egwudike Chukwuebuka – had in the suit contended that Soludo provided false information in the affidavit (Form EC9) that he submitted to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and should be deemed unqualified to stand for election.

In the suit marked: FHC/ABJ/CS/711/2021, the plaintiffs claimed that Soludo indicated, in the affidavit, that he was contesting the Aguata 2 Constituency seat when in fact, he was contesting the Anambra governorship seat and his deputy claimed to be contesting Awka constituency instead of Anambra deputy governorship.

Defendants in the suit are INEC, the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), Soludo and Ibezim.

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In their final submission, plaintiffs’ lawyers, A. O. Ijeri and Kelvin Okoko, had argued that having indicated the wrong constituency he was contesting, Soludo supplied INEC with false information, violated extant legal provisions, and ought to be disqualified.

“The constitution has made a state a constituency in relation to the governorship election, but in this case, the third defendant (Soludo) named Aguata 2 as the constituency he is contesting,” Ijeri said.

But in his judgment, Justice Taiwo held that the two plaintiffs failed woefully to establish how the alleged wrong in the constituency affected or misled them as voters and in any other capacity.

Anambra Election: Court Dismisses Suit Challenging Soludo’s Victory

The judge said that apart from the alleged wrongful disclosure of constituency, Soludo as the third defendant made it clear in other parts of his affidavit on oath that he was contesting the Anambra governorship election while Ibezim as the fourth defendant also indicated in other parts of his affidavit that he was contesting deputy governorship.

“From the processes filed in this suit and which I have carefully perused, the two plaintiffs did not convince the court on how they were misled by the information.

“No aspects of the 1999 Constitution as amended or any part of the Electoral Act 2010 compel 3rd and 4th defendants (Soludo and Ibezim) to name constituency as a condition for qualification to stand for election.

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“Lawyers as ministers in the temple of justice should always counsel politicians against rushing to court with frivolous suits that will achieve no purpose than to waste the precious time of the court.

“As a matter of fact, I am yet to come to terms with the purpose this suit is to serve. This suit is not reasonable.

“Giving false information is a criminal offence and proof of an allegation of supplying false information must be beyond a reasonable doubt.

“It is high time Nigerians come together to deepen democracy and not to use frivolous suits to stagnate it and this is in our own interest,” he said.

Justice Taiwo, who wondered the motive behind the suit, noted with dismay that apart from the alleged wrongful disclosure of constituencies, no other aspects of the laws were alleged to have been breached by Soludo and Ibezim including their educational qualifications.

Lead counsel to APGA and Soludo, Dr. Onyechi Ikpeazu (SAN) had argued that the suit was without merit and that the court lacked jurisdiction to hear it.

Ikpeazu contended that error in an affidavit cannot be a basis to disqualify a candidate from an election, noting that the false information contemplated in Section 31 of the Electoral Act was criminal. in nature.

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He further argued that the false information claimed by the plaintiff was not among the grounds stated in the Constitution for the disqualification of a candidate.

“False information, as envisaged in section 31 of the Electoral Act is criminal in nature. Section 31 does not deal with error, but a deliberate effort to steal a match and to misrepresent.

“The contention that the 14 days required under Section 285(9) of the Constitution, should accrue from the date the first respondent (INEC) received those affidavits, has no supporting foundation,” he said.

Ikpeazu urged the court to uphold the preliminary objection filed by his clients and dismiss the case.

Lawyer to Ibezim, C. Mbaeri argued in a similar vein and prayed the court to uphold his objection and dismiss the suit.

Lawyer to INEC, Bashir Abubakar said his client did not file any process in the case and has elected to leave the decision at the discretion of the court.

Justice Taiwo however disagreed with Ikpeazu that the suit was statute barred as at the time it was filed while he also held that the court had jurisdiction to hear the case as he did.

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Anambra Election: 11 parties, candidates challenge Soludo’s victory in the tribunal

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Anambra Election: 11 parties, candidates challenge Soludo’s victory in the tribunal
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Anambra Election: 11 parties, candidates challenge Soludo’s victory in the tribunal

A total of 11 political parties and their candidates have filed petitions at the Anambra governorship election petition tribunal.

The parties and their candidates are challenging the victory of the candidate of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), Prof. Chukwuma Soludo.

DAILY POST gathered that the petitioners were able to beat the deadline for the expiration of the 21 days stipulated by the Electoral Act for the filing of petitions against the outcome of the Anambra state gubernatorial elections.

The political parties, between Monday and Tuesday, made the last-minute filing of their petitions as against expectations in some quarters that it would be a walkover for the Governor-elect.

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Secretary of the tribunal, Barr Surajo Gusau disclosed to our correspondent the candidates and political parties who have filed petitions.

Among the parties are; Sen Andy Uba of the All Progressive Congress (APC) who is calling for a declaration that he won a majority of the valid votes cast in the said election.

Court dismisses suit seeking Soludo’s disqualification as Anambra governor-elect

The Action Democratic Party (ADP) and its candidate, Prince Adam Ume-Ezeoke, in their petition prayed the tribunal for the nullification of the election on the grounds that the Bi-Modal Accreditation Verification System (BVAS) is not in the Electoral Act and the malfunctioning ultimately disenfranchised over 90 percent of the registered voters.

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Also, the candidate of the Accord (A), Dr. Godwin Maduka, and his party called for the nullification of the election on the ground of irregularities.

Other parties include the United Patriots, which petitioned the tribunal on the grounds of wrongful exclusion of the party name from the ballot calling for the nullification of the election as well as the Green Party and the Action People’s Party (APP) among others.

DAILY POST gathered that the three-man panel of Tribunal Judges is expected to arrive in Anambra State soon.

Special Adviser to Gov Wille Obiano on Political Matters, Barr Ifeatu Obiokoye told journalists that APGA is not losing sleep over the petitions.

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He said: “We shall take it as it comes and we are not losing sleep over those petitions and do not lose sight of the game plan of a particular party and petitioner by sponsoring some lesser political parties to go to tribunal and later withdraw from the suits and collapse into their benefactors at the end of the day.

“Our party the All Progressives Grand Alliance won the election and we are prepared to defend our mandate at the tribunal.”

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Umahi Presents 2022 Appropriation Bill Of ₦145.4bn To Ebonyi House Of Assembly

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Umahi Presents 2022 Appropriation Bill Of ₦145.4bn To Ebonyi House Of Assembly
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Umahi Presents 2022 Appropriation Bill Of ₦145.4bn To Ebonyi House Of Assembly

Governor David Umahi today presented 2022 Appropriation Bill and Budget estimates in the sum of One Hundred and Forty Five Billion, Four Hundred and Ten Million, Five Hundred and Ninety Seven Thousand, Seven Hundred and Seventy Three Naira, Forty Nine Kobo (N145,410,597,723.49) tagged “Budget of Latter Rain” to Ebonyi State House of Assembly Chambers, Nkaliki, Ebonyi State.

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