The Akwa Ibom State chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) has described the comments credited to Ekiti State Governor, Ayodele Fayose, accusing the APC and President Muhammadu Buhari of meddling in the judicial process as false, rascally inspired and maliciously intended.
In a statement by it Publicity Secretary, Engr Ita Awak, the party said “contrary to the hypocritical posturing of Fayose, it is the PDP and Senator Godswill Akpabio’s puppet regime in Akwa Ibom that should be accused of unwholesomely meddling in the affairs of the tribunals, judging by all that has played out so far in both the National Assembly and State House of Assembly and the Akwa Ibom State Governorship Election Petition tribunals”.
The party added that “no averagely intelligent person can conclude that the judgment handed down by the Justice Sadiq Umar-led panel is in favour of the APC in Akwa Ibom as the party’s prayer was for total annulment of the violent, irregular and unacceptably fraudulent governorship election of April 11, 2015”.
“We have been compelled to make the above assertion for the following reasons: Long before the Akwa Ibom State National Assembly and State House of Assembly Tribunals started reading out their final judgements on petitions brought by APC candidates, high ranking officers of both the Udom interregnum and the PDP had confided in and assured their supporters that the N10 billion loan that Udom hurriedly got weeks ago was for the purpose of “settling” all the election panels for Akwa Ibom State”, the party alleged.
The party added: “The PDP chiefs and government officials also assured their aides and followers that because of this uncommon “settlement,” all the tribunals in charge of Akwa Ibom petitions were going to invent reasons to jettison the “card reader” reports so as to justify the fraudulent votes that the INEC officials in Uyo awarded in favour PDP candidates”.
“It is a fact that chieftains of Akwa Ibom PDP and government knew the date Justice Sadiq Umar-led panel will deliver judgement on the governorship election one whole week earlier and went into massive mobilisation of its members and giving them uniforms they were to wear in celebration of the verdict,” the APC said.
The party expressed dismay that the Secretary of the Governorship Tribunal only “told APC lawyers of the Wednesday date fixed for judgment at about 1:00 pm on Tuesday and a day to the judgment”.
“Very importantly, members of Akwa Ibom PDP already knew by Monday, clear two days to the day judgment was read, that the governorship election will be cancelled in a few local government areas in favour of the PDP and a “rerun” ordered. While the APC in Akwa Ibom State regard our judges in the tribunals in high esteem and have explicit confidence in the integrity of the Nigerian judiciary, we are deeply worried that all the issues that officials of the Udom regime and PDP openly boasted of, bordering on the dangerous compromise of high officers of our judicial system, have interestingly come to pass”, the party said.
The party wondered why Fayose and the PDP will not attack the judiciary when “Justice Anunihu declared that it was legitimate for 205,519 voters in Akwa Ibom North West senatorial district to cast 444,505 vote for Godswill Akpabio, when successful accreditation was only 90,618 and failed accreditation stood at 114,901”.
“In Akpabio’s judgement which Fayose has decided to turn a blind eye, total inflated accreditation on result sheet was 461,702, unsubstantiated accreditation, 256,183 and over voting, 238,986, in addition to the fact that Akpabio was never a PDP candidate for the Akwa Ibom North West senatorial seat. But no one in the PDP uttered a word against the uncommon judgement”, the party stated.
The party wondered why Fayose “did not raise an alarm when the tribunal ruled that Akpabio’s North East nomination form tendered before the tribunal was a minor error while the Card reader report also tendered by INEC was ruled to have been admitted in error.
“We must state clearly that all attempts to blackmail the judiciary by the likes of Fayose and the drowning PDP will fail. It is obvious that Governor Ayodele Fayose’s utterances on the judgment of the Akwa Ibom Governorship Election Tribunal are borne out of ignorance/ mischief. We remind Fayose that as one who occupies the office of a governor of a state in Nigeria, he is expected to exhibit excellence in his public utterances.
“We also call on security agencies in Nigeria and other concerned government institutions and departments to carry out comprehensive investigations into all the claims that the judicial processes involving 2015 election matters in Akwa Ibom State have been compromised and bring to book all culprits to serve as a deterrent to others and restore sanity back to our electoral process,” the party said.