The Candidate of All Progressives Congress, APC, in Benue State in the 2019 governorship election, Mr. Emmanuel Jime said he has accepted the Supreme Court verdict, which upheld Governor Samuel Ortom as the real winner of the 2019 election, in good faith.
Jime who stated this while reacting to the Supreme Court verdict on the 2019 Benue Governorship election petition described the ruling as sad.
He said, “Today, the Supreme Court ruled on a petition we brought before it challenging earlier rulings on the outcome of the 2019 governorship election in Benue State. The court’s decision unfortunately did not go in our favour, bringing to a close our legal quest on the matter.
“Sad as the Supreme Court judgment is to me, our party, and teeming supporters, we accept the verdict in good faith, and take its implications in our stride.
“When we decided to file a petition at the elections petition tribunal last year, it was not out of a need to pursue power or take advantage of the judicial process for the sake of it. We took this route all the way to the Supreme Court as part of our commitment towards strenthening the integrity of our electoral process.
“It was and remains our firm belief that unless the sanctity of the ballot is guaranteed, self serving politicians will continue to game the system to retain their clutch on power.”
He expressed deep appreciation to their legal team saying they put up a dogged fight and presented a good case with solid evidence.
“The outcome might not have gone our way but it shows we will never look the other way where we see cases of electoral malpractice. I remain eternally grateful for the efforts of our lawyers and witnesses.
“I also extend my appreciation to the Justices of the Supreme Court, who in spite of a back-breaking workload, gave our petition the thorough attention it deserved. The outcome notwithstanding, we remain highly respectful of their verdict.”
Jime also expressed special gratitude to party faithful and supporters as well as the leader of APC in Benue, Senator George Akume – Minister of Special Duties and Inter-Governmental Affairs, the Benue State APC exco, party leaders, members of the Jime/Ode Campaign Organisation and all those who supported them.
While he encouraged them not to despair over news of the verdict, Jime pointed out that, “Taunts, jeers and intimidation will come, but lets not buckle under them and see those as part of the sacrifice we need to make for a better tomorrow.
“Lastly, let me address the good people of Benue State. The verdict announced by the Supreme Court today signals an end to our inquest on the 2019 governorship elections in Benue. It does not mean we will take our eyes off governance issues as they affect people of Benue.
“So let this serve as a notice that whenever we notice our people are being shortchanged by those who hold the reins of power, we will speak up in defence of their rights and wellbeing. Simply put, we will not turn our backs on you,” he said.