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Court Grants INEC Request To Reconfigure BVAS



The Presidential Election Petiton Court, PEPC, sitting at the Court of Appeal in Abuja, on Wednesday, gave the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, permission to reconfigure the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System, BVAS, it used for the presidential election.

The court, in a unanimous decision by a three-member panel of Justices, held that stopping the electoral body from reconfiguring the BVAS would adversely affect the impending Governorship and State Assembly elections.

It disagree with the objections that the Labour Party and its presidential candidate, Peter Obi, raised against INEC’s move to reconfigure all the BVAS.

Agreeing that the court, allowing the objections by Labour Party and Obi, would amount to “tying the hands of the Respondent, INEC”.

Besides, it noted that INEC had in an affidavit it filed before the court, assured that the accreditation data contained in the BVAS could not be tampered with or lost, as they would be stored and easily retrieved from its accredited back-end server.

It further observed that neither Obi nor LP controverted the depositions in INEC’s affidavit, stressing that since such averments were not challenged, it amounted to admission by the Applicants.

However, the court ordered INEC to allow the Applicants to inspect and carry out digital forensic examination of all the electoral materials used in the conduct of the elections, as well as to avail them the Certified True Copy, of result of the physical inspection of the BVAS.

The Justice Joseph Ikyegh-led panel faulted Obi and LP for repeating their request to be allowed to scan and make copies of the electoral materials in INEC’s possession.

Saying that the request was earlier granted, the panel held that repeating the prayer amounted to an abuse of court process.

Remember that INEC had insisted that the reconfiguration of the BVAS was necessary since they would be deployed for the next round of elections.

It maintained that without a prompt variation of the order the court earlier granted to Obi and the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Atiku Abubakar, especially the aspect restraining it from tampering with information contained in the BVAS, it would be difficult for it to proceed with the scheduled elections.

Labour Party and Peter Obi had in their application marked: CA/PEC/09m/23, sought permission to be allowed to conduct physical inspection of all the BVAS that were used for the presidential poll.

The Applicants, through their team of lawyers led by Dr. Onyechi Ikpeazu, SAN, said the essence of the application was to enable them to extract data embedded in the BVAS, “which represent the actual results from Polling Units”.

They specifically applied for; “leave to carryout digital forensic and physical inspection of BVAS, etc”, as well as to obtain the Certified True Copy, CTC, of all the data in the BVAS.

“My lords, this is to ensure that the evidence is preserved before the BVAS are reconfigured by INEC. This is because if they are wiped out, it will affect the substance of our case”, Ikpeazu, SAN, added.

Innopposing the application, INEC insisted that granting the request would affect its preparations for the impending Governorship and National Assembly elections.

INEC told the court that there were a total of 176, 000 BVAS that were deployed to polling units during the presidential election.

“Each polling unit has its own particular BVAS machine which we need to configure for the forthcoming elections.

“It will be very difficult for us, within the period, to reconfigure the 176, 000 BVAS.

“We have already stated in our affidavit that no information in the BVAS will be lost as we will transfer all the data in the BVAS to our back-end server.

“We need the BVAS configured. So, granting this application will be a clog in the process and may delay the conduct of the elections”, INEC’s lead lawyer, Tanimu Inuwa, SAN, pleaded.

Source Vanguard

Nelly Agwu is an educationist, a journalist, a Blogger, graduate of History. Very dynamic and a realist. A mouthpiece of the oppressed. Easy going and a Philanthropist.

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PDP NWC Suspends Fayose, Anyim, Refers Ortom To Disciplinary Committee



People Democratic Party NWC, today, March 23, 2023 releases a press statement which says,

PDP Refers Ortom to Disciplinary Committee, Suspends Fayose, Anyim, Others.

The National Working Committee (NWC) of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has after very extensive review of the affairs of our Party in the country and pursuant to the provisions of the PDP Constitution (as amended in 2017) referred the Governor of Benue State, Dr. Samuel Ortom to the National Disciplinary Committee over his reported involvement in anti-party activities.

The NWC also approved the suspension of the following from the Party with effect from today, Thursday, March 23, 2023.

1.Ayodele Fayose (Ekiti State)
2.Sen. Pius Anyim (Ebonyi State)
3.Prof. Dennis Ityavyar (Benue State)
4.Dr. Aslam Aliyu (Zamfara State)

The PDP urges all leaders, critical stakeholders and teeming members of our Party across the country to remain united and focused at this critical time.


Hon. Debo Ologunagba
National Publicity Secretary.

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Abia State Governor Elect Alex Otti Acceptance Speech



Alex Otti Abia State Governor Elect.


My fellow Abians, it gives me great pleasure this evening to address you, following the final announcement of the results of the gubernatorial elections conducted across the state last Saturday, March 18, 2023. With deep humility and a profound sense of responsibility, I wholeheartedly accept your mandate to be your chief servant for the next 4 years.

Before I go on, I must first dedicate this victory to God the Father Almighty, who makes everything beautiful in His own time. I also dedicate it to the millions of Abia citizens who have been the unfortunate victims of bad governance these past decades. As I acknowledge this victory, I am fully conscious of the huge expectations of millions of the good people of Abia, who have been denied the dividends of democracy and good governance for such a long time. I want to sincerely thank every Abian and non-indigene alike who participated in this election. As you are all aware, this was my third attempt at contesting for this office, in my quest to implement my long-held vision of rebuilding Abia state as truly God’s own state. At this third attempt, it pleased God to give us victory. In the words of one Labour Party stalwart, ‘The Siege Is Over’! With our votes and the collective will of the people, we have “broken the gates of hell and cast its bars of iron asunder”. As recorded in the holy book, the kingdom of hell shall not prevail against us.

I would like to quickly compliment my colleagues in the just-concluded elections, Chief Sir Okechukwu Ahiwe, Engr Enyinnaya Nwafor, High Chief Ikechi Emenike, Prof Gregory Ibe, and a host of other equally qualified governorship candidates. It has been a hard-fought contest and each of you gave his or her best in the quest to serve our beloved State. There is no doubt that all of us have very robust ideas as to how to move our dear State forward. I want to assure you that your ideas and dreams that are consistent with building a virile Abia state shall come to fruition under my watch. I therefore invite all of you to join hands with our administration in order to serve Abians who have been victims of several years of
maladministration and state capture. I have no doubt that you will be available to use the same energy and intellect, to help rebuild our state and develop our people. Of particular mention are the Candidates that have publicly conceded defeat and congratulated us, even when the battle of Obingwa fictitious votes was still raging. These include Prof. Greg Ibe, Bishop Sunday Onuoha, Bishop Emeka Nwankpa, Chief Bond Ohuche, Chief Chibuike Jonas, amongst others. It is well with all of you.

I want to thank the young and energetic Deputy Governor-elect, Engr Ikechukwu Emetu who is going to be carrying the burden of governance with me. I also want to thank my Campaign team led by Hon. Acho Obioma and various support and volunteers groups who worked tirelessly to make today possible. You are simply the best hands any candidate can find! Your creative ideas and dedication to our common goal were unprecedented.

I must not fail to thank the leadership and members of Labour Party, who worked very hard to ensure that this day would come. I thank all those who worked with me through moments of despair and hope, through tears, sweat and blood, through betrayals, denials and dangers untold. It is said that the harder the struggle, the sweeter the victory. Please savour the sweetness of your hard work and firm belief.

I must give special thanks to my best friend, my confidant, my number one fan, my heartbeat, the wife of my youth, the mother of my children, and the First Lady in waiting, of Abia state, Lady Priscilla Chidinma Otti (Onugu Abia). I must thank her for living up to the challenges of being the wife of someone committed to these ideals, with equanimity and elegance. Unfortunately the work has only just begun but now you must support me, just like you have done in the past 30 years of our marriage, to work for the people of Abia. Special thanks to our children, Dr. Ezinwa, Engnr Alex Jr and Chinweotuto for being there and supporting
Daddy without reservation.

I must pause and remember some of those who have left us in the course of this journey. Although they are no longer here with us, I am sure that where ever they are now, they will be smiling with satisfaction that finally, we have triumphed over the forces that have held the State captive for so long. Some of the more notable ones among them are Prince Otisi Kalu, Abbott, Pastor Nnanna Ngwu, who both served as Chairmen for this campaign at different times. I must also remember my friend from Anambra State, Mr Eze Alomefuna, Rico, who worked tirelessly to help end the dynasty of incompetence in Abia state. Also to be
remembered are Prince Dike O. Dike and Dr. Mike Nwachukwu who lost their lives within the period of this struggle. Worthy of mention is the less than two year old little Adanna who tragically lost her life in 2015, when in the frenzy and excitement of our electoral victory, her father, Mr. Pius Oha accidentally ran over her in a car. In spite of the exigency of time, please join me in observing a minute’s silence in honour of these fallen heroes.

Indeed, I see this victory as a call to service. Even as I come out of a bruising and long drawn out campaign, I know that this is just the beginning of the journey. There is a lot of work to be done and we must get all hands on deck to ensure that we take back our state and bring the much sought-after dividends of democracy.

You voted us to serve you and not to be served. You voted us to alleviate your sufferings and not to compound and multiply them. This is a service that comes with unusually high sense of devotion and commitment given our checkered history as a people. During my electioneering campaign, I traversed all nooks and crannies of Abia state, and that enabled me to have first-hand assessment of the needs and expectations of Abians. These are the basic things expected by the people for a responsible government to provide in order to unleash the potential inherent in the typically hardworking Abians. Based on my findings and those of my team members, it dawned on us that an immediate hands-on approach is required to hit the ground running and to ensure that we alleviate the sufferings of all Abians, I promised you that I will serve you as the Governor of all Abians and all citizens living in Abia, irrespective of clan, religious persuasion or political leaning. I see my mandate as cutting across all strata of our people and I once more promise to use the resources accruing to all Abians for the benefit of all Abians and the residents. I will like to assure us that we hold no bitterness against anyone and will not go on any revenge mission against anyone. If in the process of getting here, we have wronged anyone, kindly find a space in your heart to forgive. We have equally forgiven anyone that wronged us. This will be a government that would unite everyone in this state as we are all brothers and sisters.

I want to salute the industry and resourcefulness of all Abians, the religious and traditional institutions, the civil servants, working class, the pensioners, the Business community, the physically challenged members of our society and indeed everyone that wishes Abia well. There shall be no discrimination whatsoever in the amenities that each person is able to access in our government. I made a firm promise to all civil servants and pensioners owed salaries, pensions and emoluments that an immediate payment plan would be put in place to ensure that this gets the priority it deserves.

I am very much aware and prepared to deal with the issues of infrastructural decay which have continued to militate against our growth and development as a state. This will be tackled head-on. There is no doubt that given the deplorable state of our infrastructure, roads, schools and health systems, Abians are deservedly impatient to have these issues addressed as quickly as possible. I assure you that these areas will receive the priority attention of our government.

Nevertheless, I caution that we all will need to put in our best and row together in one direction. There is no magic wand that can fix all the rot and decay noticed in virtually all segments of the system since the past years. For us to have sustainable development, it would require very painstaking and elaborate layout of master plans to enable us tackle the menace of flooding and re-engineer our cities especially Aba, Umuahia and other cities that would be developed in order to support our urban renewal projects. We therefore plead for patience and understanding as we first tackle the immediate challenges and work on the major ones. The approach of our government will revolve around crafting policies that will enable our government tap the creative energies of every Abian. We remain resolute in our drive to eliminate poverty and create sustainable wealth for our people.

Once again, thank you for electing me and my Deputy to serve you for the next 4 years. We trust God for His enablement to offer our services to Abians in such a way that we would not disappoint you. We shall implement our manifesto which is a revered pact between our administration and the good people of Abia state.

My dearly beloved Abians, as I conclude this address, I want to reassure you that we are going to run an open, transparent and accountable government devoid of waste and profligacy. Our doors will remain wide open and our channels of communication will remain unfettered so that your worthy contributions and suggestions will be a guiding light as we together navigate the thorny paths of rebuilding the state and transforming same for the benefit of all.

We deeply cherish you all and will do our best to ensure that the trust reposed in us is not in vain.

Thank you all and God bless Abia State! God bless Nigeria!!

Dr. Alex Chioma Otti OFR,
Governor-Elect, Abia State
Umuahia, 22nd March 2023

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INEC Has Rejected Obingwa Results, Asks For Review And Announcement Of Abia/Enugu Gubernatorial Election



The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has rejected the Abia State Governorship Election results from Obingwa, the collation of which was disrupted by thugs on Sunday, leading to the suspension of the exercise by the electoral umpire.

A usually reliable source in the know disclosed that INEC rejected the allegedly padded results after a careful review of the exercise earlier today, Tuesday, March 21, 2023.

“INEC ordered that the results should be announced based on the accredited voters,” the source said.

It equally disclosed that INEC has similarly ordered for the review of the results of the Enugu State Governorship Election of last Saturday, the collation of which was suspended following controversy over the alleged padding of results from Nkanu East Council, which returned over 30,000 votes in favour of Peoples Democratic Party candidate, Mr. Peter Mbah, while only about 7,000 voters were accredited in the area by the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS).

The suspension of the announcement of results of Abia and Enugu guber election believed to be won by the Labour Party has heightened tension in the two states.

In Abia, Dr Alex Otti of the Labour Party has won a total of 10 out of the 16 Local Government Area results so far declared by INEC, just as his Enugu counterpart, Hon. Chijioke Edeoga is in the lead in the state.

Source News Express.

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