The gubernatorial candidate of the Allied Peoples Movement APM, in the just concluded 2023 governorship election in Rivers State, Barr. Innocent Ekwu, has urged the Court of Appeal to declare him the governor of the state.
Ekwu stated this in an interview with newsmen in Port Harcourt, on Saturday, shortly after the party appealed the judgement of the Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal which validated the victory of Governor Siminalayi Fubara of the People’s Democratic Party as announced by the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC.
The APM flagbearer insisted that he was the only qualified candidate in the 2023 governorship election, and urged the court to declare him governor of the state.
Ekwu who raised 22 grounds of appeal, alleged that Fubara’s nomination was invalid and faulted the governor’s alleged non-resignation from the civil service.
Speaking of the appeal, he said, “We have asked the court of appeal to set aside the judgment of the tribunal which affirmed the election and return of Sim Fubara.
“We have also asked the court of appeal to reach decision in the favour of the appellant by granting our relieves to hold that Sim was never qualified to contest the election, as a result of his bridge of the mandatory provision of the constitution, and the mandatory provision of the electoral act, each of these, were established and proven beyond reasonable doubt.
“We have also asked the court of appeal to declare me as the only qualified candidate, as the governor of Rivers State. We are hopeful to win.”
Amidst the reliefs sought by the APM 2023 Guber candidate who expressed confidence in clinching victory at the appeal court, was an order to void the election that went in favor of Fubara.
Ekwu further added that, “Also, we submitted a prove showing that his nomination was invalid, and these proves before the tribunal were unchallenged and it is settled law that an unchallenged prove by a complaint which are not denied, which are not challenged by any means must be acted upon by the court.
“And so we have challenged the decision of the tribunal and the fact that the first respondent failed to file any personal witness deposition to deny the allegations in the petition and the fact that PDP did not call any witness, they abandoned their witness deposition and INEC did not call any witness, they abandoned their witness deposition and with the prove tendered the tribunal was bound by law to resolve in our favour.”