January 19, 2021
The Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja has upheld the nomination of Obong Akan Udofia as Governorship Candidate of the All Progressives Congress(APC) in Akwa Ibom State.
In a unanimous judgement delivered by Justice Idris JCA in the suit marked CA/C/373/2022, the Court of Appeal set aside the November 14th Judgement of Justice Agatha Okeke of Federal High Court Uyo which had nullified the May 26th 2022 APC Primaries in Akwa Ibom.
The court held that appeal has merit and the lower court decision has been set aside.
The appellate court dismissed Sen. Ita Enang’s arguments and held that Akan Udofia is the duly nominated candidate of the APC for the 2023 Governorship election in Akwa Ibom State.
The Court equally declared that the Federal High Court did not have jurisdiction over the case, having been filed out of time by the petitioner, Senator Ita Enang, who had sought to nullify the Akwa Ibom APC Guber Primary Election on the ground that he was not joined as a party in the matter,having participated in the said Primaries.
Writing on his verified social media handles, Obong Akan Udofia, responding to the Appeal Court Judgment posted a simple statement:
“This is the time to sheath swords, close ranks and advance in one accord“ ~ Obong Akanimo Udofia
Meanwhile and in a related development, the Akan Udofia Campaign Council has reacted to the Appeal Court victory which confirmed Obong Akan Udofia as the substantive Akwa Ibom Governorship Candidate of the All Progressives Congress APC, describing it as a signpost for shared prosperity in the State.
A statement from the Campaign Organization titled: OBONG AKANIMO UDOFIA’S WIN AT COURT OF APPEAL IS A WIN FOR PROSPERITY!, reads:
The Akanimo Udofia Campaign Council is pleased at the judgment of the Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja which has upturned the November 14, 2022 judgment of the Federal Court, Uyo. Justice Agatha Okeke in a curious judgment had declared that Obong Akanimo Udofia, the Governorship Candidate of the APC in Akwa Ibom State, is not a member of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
Delivering judgments today in the Appeals filed against Senator Ita Solomon Enang, OFR and Mr. Austin Utuk, the Court of Appeal in a unanimous judgement held that Obong Akanimo Udofia is a bonafide member of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and had full rights to contest the Party’s Governorship Primary election of May 26, 2022.
We salute the courage and industry of their Lordships at the Court of Appeal in sieving through the cacophony of misleading and disruptive submissions and arriving at clearly just and legally sound decisions. These decisions have further rekindled our hope in the Judiciary for rising to the challenge as a bastion for the common man.
What is more instructive is that these judgments signpost the shared prosperity movement in Akwa Ibom State and offers the assurance that all hope is not lost. We are on course and the total emancipation of Akwa Ibom through a rebirth is the destination.
The doggedness of our Governorship Candidate Obong Akanimo Udofia is legendary and we salute his unwavering commitment to the course of liberating the deliberately impoverished mass of Akwa Ibom people. His determination to stand against internal and externally propelled forces must be applauded.
We believe that those who approached the Courts did so out of a genuine desire to strengthen and deepen the bonds that inform the basis of our relationship as party men in one large family. This is the time to sheath swords, close ranks and advance in one accord.
We seize this opportunity to restate the fact that our resolve towards the prosperity of our people is non-negotiable. The bulk of our common patrimony must be deployed for the benefit of the generality of Akwa Ibom people and not just a few!
We congratulate the leadership of our Party under the Chairmanship of Obong Stephen Leo Ntukekpo, our men, women and youths for keeping the faith and for your prayers and support. The stakes are high, but we shall surmount them.
Indeed, prosperity is coming to Akwa Ibom.
Barr. Imo E. Akpan,
Director of Communications/Spokesperson,
Akan Udofia Campaign Organisation