The Appellate Court sitting in Calabar, Cross River State has dismissed the appeal filed by the Action Congress of Nigeria and its candidate in the Governorship election in Akwa Ibom State, Senator James Akpkanudoedehe to challenge Governor Akpabio’s election as the Governor of Akwa Ibom State. After the Election Petitions tribunal had ruled in favour of of Chief Godswil Akpabio, Akpanudoedehe had gone ahead to appeal against the the ruling.
In a unanimous decision by Justices Jafaru Makailu , Akeju and Oredola of the Appeal Court, which was read by Justice M.A. Oredola on Thursday, the court held that the appellant failed to comply with Paragraph 47(1) of the First Schedule of the 2010 Electoral Act in moving their motion for the application of pre-hearing session.
The court agreed with the decision of the lower tribunal that the appellants’ application was defective as it failed to meet provisions of Paragraph 18(4) of the First Schedule of the 2010 Election Act (as amended).
While addressing the argument of the Action Congress of Nigeria counsel on whether the ruling of the trial court was not duly signed by all the judges, Justice Oredola pointed out that the judgment was signed by majority of the judges.
He said “when the manuscript of the judgment was shown before the court, it showed that it was duly signed by majority of the judges.
The trial tribunal cannot be faulted for invoking the provisions of the Electoral Act on the appellants.”