Why INEC will not act on Umahi’s sack – official

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) says it has suspended action on the court judgment ordering the sack of David Umahi and Eric Igwe, governor and deputy governor of Ebonyi, respectively.

The commission, in a statement issued on Thursday, alluded to the various court processes it has received on the issue.

The Cornet reported that a court sacked Umahi, his deputy, and 16 state lawmakers over their defection from the PDP to the All Progressives Congress.

But, the governor and others so affected have appealed the judgement.

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Umahi insists he cannot be removed because he enjoys immunity from being sued as an incumbent governor.

Festus Okoye, chairman of INEC’s information and voter education committee, said the commission received a total of 12 court rulings on the matter, adding that it will stay action pending the outcome of the appeals.

“The commission stepped down the listed memorandum to enable its legal services and clearance committee to study the new processes served on it in the light of the previously served ones and advise the commission comprehensively.

“Since then, the commission has been served yet more court processes on the same matter, bringing the total to 12.

“The commission deliberated extensively on these cases and decided to further suspend action on the defection of the governor and deputy governor of Ebonyi State and sixteen members of the state house of assembly from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to the All Progressives Congress (APC), in the light of conflicting court judgments and court orders served on it from courts of coordinate jurisdictions.

“The commission also considers it prudent to stay action on the conflicting judgements and orders being aware of the pendency of appeals and motions for stay of execution of some of the judgements before various divisions of the court of appeal.”


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