Former Governor of Akwa Ibom State and former Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio, has indicated his interest to proceed to the nation’s apex court after the Court of Appeal truncated his bid to return to the Senate in next year’s election.
On Monday, the three-member appellate court determined led by Justice Danlami Senchi held that Akpabio failed to file a proof of arguments within the time provided by the rules.
It added that the former senator being a presidential aspirant of the APC, could not participate in the valid primary of the party held on May 27 and monitored by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC). That primary produced Udom Ekpoudom as a candidate.
Recall that a Federal High Court in Abuja ruled last September that INEC reinstate Akpabio as APC’s candidate, being the candidate nominated by the party in the second primary of June 9.
Justice Emeka Nwite held that Akpabio was validly nominated as the Akwa – Ibom North/West Senatorial District candidate of the APC from the primary conducted by the party’s National Working Committee (NWC).
He faulted INEC for electing to monitor the May 27 primary, conducted by an illegal faction of the party led by Augustine Ekanem as against the June 9 primary authorized conducted by the APC NWC.
Following his sack by the appeal court Akpabio, in a statement, said he was not a party in the said Appeal though Orders were made against him and his interest.
He added, ” whilst awaiting a copy of the said judgement to be made available to me and any other interested party, it is important to state that I am a Lawyer by training and a law abiding citizen of this country and I am bound by our laws and judgements emanating from our courts including the one under reference
“My Lawyers on my advice and brief have commenced the scrutiny of the contents of the judgement as read, for the purposes of seeking appropriate legal redress.
“I am aware that the Supreme Court of Nigeria has the final say in these matters. I therefore, strongly advise my supporters, APC members and all my constituents to remain calm and law abiding, as they continue their campaigns for the successes of the APC in Akwa Ibom North West Senatorial District, Akwa Ibom State and Nigeria at large.”