Senator-elect, Benjamin Uwajumogu, and his supporters on Monday stormed the Independent National Electoral Commission’s (INEC’s) office in Abuja to protest the commission’s denial to issue him a certificate of return.
Uwajumogu, who contested on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC), had claimed victory of the Imo North senatorial zone poll in the last election but INEC refused to issue him certificate of return on the ground that the senator-elect was wrongly declared winner of the election.
INEC, however, claims that it had set up a committee to investigate the veracity or otherwise of claims of misconduct during the election
But not satisfied with INEC position, Uwajumogu had dragged the matter to Abuja Federal High Court. The court in its ruling on the matter had directed the electoral body to issue a certificate of return to the senator-elect.
However, three weeks after the ruling, INEC is yet to comply with the court order, warranting the senator-elect and his supporters to stage a protest march at the electoral body’s office.
According to the Director General of Benjamin Uwajumogu campaign organisation, Matthew Omegara, Nigerians should hold INEC responsible should there be any break down of law and order. He said that the commission has 24 hours to release the certificate of return.
Speaking during the rally, Uwajumogu explained that he took the matter to the Federal High Court as a law abiding citizen and obtained a judgment ordering INEC to release his certificate of return, but that till date, INEC was yet to obey the judgment.
Wondering why INEC was frustrating him, he said, “Why is my own different. Why is INEC looking for excuses to deny us our certificate of return when a court of competent jurisdiction has given an order?
“I am here today to collect my certificate of return, but INEC has refused to issue me the certificate. I am asking them to do that to forestall break down of law and order. We are prepared to do whatever it will take to get our certificate of return.”
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