Power outage stalls Ebonyi NASS election tribunal sitting

Lantern Light used to illustrate the story
Lantern Light used to illustrate the story

A power outage at the Ebonyi State Judiciary Headquarters on Monday forced the National Assembly election petition tribunal to adjourn sitting in Abakaliki.

The tribunal room was filled to its capacity with hundreds of supporters of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the All Progressives Congress (APC).

The power outage made the courtroom very uncomfortable for everyone as they waited in vain for the Enugu Electricity Distribution Company to restore power.

The tribunal was scheduled to commence sitting at 11 a.m but started way behind schedule. The tribunal Chairman, Justice S. H. Aprioku, appeared in court at about 12 noon and apologised that the lateness was as a result of the power outage.

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) had on February 25 declared the candidate of the PDP, Lazarus Ogbe, the winner of the Ikwo/Ezza South Federal Constituency.

But the candidate of the APC, Chinedu Ogah, asked the tribunal to declare him the winner of the election.

At the resumed hearing on Monday, counsel to Mr Ogah, Mba Ukweni, said the result of the election that INEC cancelled was collated at the polling units and the ward levels.
He said the result announced by the commission was not the original result collated at the polls.

The tribunal chairman after listening to the submission and prayers of counsel to the petitioner sought the leave of counsel to both parties for a 15 minutes adjournment, which was unanimously adopted because of the power outage.

Within the period of the adjournment, power was restored at the complex which prompted the tribunal to reconvene. Just as the tribunal was about to commence sitting, the power went off again.

At this point, Mr Aprioku adjourned the hearing till Friday, May 17 for the continuation of the hearing.

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