The Imo State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal in Owerri on Wednesday struck out the petition of Chief Emeka Ihedioha, challenging the election of Imo State Governor, Rochas Okorocha in the April polls.
The tribunal Chairman, Justice David Wyon, after consideration of the arguments by both counsel, held that the petition was filed out of time and struck it on the ground that the petition was time-barred.
Mr Niyi Akintola (SAN), Okorocrocha’s counsel, had opposed Ihedioha’s petition, saying it was filed out of time in breach of the law guiding the timing of the filing of election petitions.
Akintola had argued that the petitioner filed the petition on June 23, while the fees were paid after the stipulated time, which implies that he failed to pay his necessary fees on the day he approached the tribunal.
He argued that since the filing was done out of time because the fees were paid after the stipulated time, the panel had no right to hear the petition and, therefore, urged the tribunal to strike out the petition
Mr Mike Ahamba (SAN), counsel to Ihedioha, had urged the tribunal to disregard Akintola’s submission, arguing that Okorocha’s counsel was only trying to buy time, saying the petition was not out of time and the fees were paid accordingly.