A Federal High Court sitting in Owerri, has nullified the election of the All Progressives Congress, APC, lawmaker-elect for Nwangele/Njaba/Isu/Nkwerre Federal Constituency of Imo state, Ugonna Ozurigbo.
A member of APC, Harrison Nwadike, had dragged the party, Ozurigbo and the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, to court seeking to be declared the rightful candidate of the party for the election.
Nwadike contended that automatic tickets were unknown to the Constitution.
Neither PDP nor its candidate was a party to the suit.
Delivering judgment, Justice Tijani Ringim, agreed with the petitioner that automatic tickets were unknown to law. He held that APC did not conduct any primary election and as such did not have any candidate in the February 23 National Assembly election.
He declared Ozurigbo’s candidacy illegitimate and ordered that the first runner-up in the election, the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, candidate, Kingsley Echendu, be issued with the certificate of return.
Justice Ringim futher ordered that the first defendant, APC, should pay the sum of N3 million to the plaintiff being the nomination fee, while an additional N10 million should be paid to him by the APC and Ozurigbo.
He also awarded N500,000 cost against INEC.