SDP, Senatorial candidate challenge Ekwunife’s victory
The Social Democratic Party (SDP) and its senatorial candidate for Anambra Central zone in the February 23 elections, Chief Tony Chukwuelue, have approached the National Assembly Election Petitions Tribunal in Awka, seeking the nullification of the election in the zone.
Chukwuelue, a lawyer and former legislative aide to Senator Annie Okonkwo, told journalists in his Abatete country home in Idemili North Council, yesterday, that he was wrongfully excluded from the poll without any reason or warning and had put the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on notice earlier.
He, therefore, joined INEC, Senator Uche Ekwunife (the declared winner) and her party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), seeking to have the result of the election set aside for a fresh election to be conducted in the zone, where his name and his party’s logo would be included in the ballot papers, which were inexplicably removed from the ballot papers for the said election; hence throwing his supporters, who trooped out to cast their votes for him, into confusion on the voting day.
Narrating his experience, ordeal and insult he had received on the matter to SDP stakeholders who gathered to be briefed about his efforts to get justice so far, Chukwuelue lamented that the situation has extensively eroded his name, image and public standing, as many supporters were erroneously informed that he sold his opportunity to some other candidate, saying those he tagged “political traducers,” who masterminded the removal of his name from the ballot, were clearly afraid of his burgeoning political popularity ahead of the election.
He said he has hired a team of lawyers to put together all the necessary documents, saying wants to participate fully and actively in the election and also prove to his supporters that there was no iota of truth in the allegation that he sold his opportunity.
He commended his political leaders, Okonkwo and Ebenezer Ikeyina, for their efforts, support and guide, while expressing optimism of getting justice at the tribunal, vowing not to relent in the pursuit of his rights until justice is done.
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