A Delta High Court in Sapele has kicked out Obro Philomena Asamah , Councillor representing Ward 17 in Sapele Local Government and declared Mr. Ibiuke Monday the winner of the Delta State Local Government Council general election conducted on the 25th day of October 2014.
“The purported nomination of Asamah as candidate for the local government election held by the Delta State Independent Electoral Commission on October 25, 2014 is null and void. She being not the valid lawful candidate at the primaries conducted by the PDP. Mr. Ibiuke Monday is the lawful candidate of the PDP for the general election in ward 17 of the Sapele Local Government Council Area, Delta State” Justice Roli Daibo Harriman said.
Aside directing the sacked councillor to vacate her seat forthwith, the Court ordered the Delta State Independent Electoral Commission to withdraw the Certificate of Return issued to Obro Philomena Asamah and issue a certificate of return to Mr. Ibiuke Monday.
“The Certificate of Return issued by the Delta State Independent Electoral Commission in favour of Obro Philomena Asamah is hereby declared null and void.”
It held that Asamah should within 30 days refund all the salaries/allowances and or emoluments she collected while occupying the seat.
“Obro Philomena Asamah is hereby ordered to refund within 30 days to the appropriate government payer agency be it the Delta State government or the Sapele local government or howsoever called, all financial benefits, salaries and allowances she has received by virtue of her being the councilor representing ward 17 of Sapele Local Government council in the election conducted by the Delta State Independent Electoral Commission on October 25, 2014 and all such sums to be paid to Mr. Obiuke Monday within 14 days of receipt.”
The Court’s decision was hinged on the fact that Mr Ibiuke was the lawful candidate at the primaries conducted by the People’s Democratic Party (PDP).
Ibiuke asked the court to declare him the winner of the poll, alleging that Asamah was not the lawful candidate of the PDP.
Honourale Justice Roli Daibo Harriman held that Asamah was not validly nominated by the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, to participate in the councillorship contest, noting that the complainant, Obiuke, was the lawful candidate.
“It is the claimant’s case that Asamah was not even qualified to contest in the primaries and the local government elections held on 25 October 2014. In as much as I had found that Asamah did not win the primaries, it will purely academic to further investigate whether Asamah was even eligible to contest the primaries.”
“Since votes cast at an election belong to the political party, I find that the votes cast for PDP at the local government elections should be for Mr. Ibiuke Monday who I have found to be the lawful candidate.”