The embattled Senator, John James Udoedehe, who was defeated at the Akwa Ibom State governorship primaries of the All Progressives Congress (APC) hit a brick wall at the Federal High Court in Abuja on Wednesday. The Senator was informed that his case against the governorship candidate of the APC, Obong Umana Oko Umana, could not go on as planned.
His counsel, Mahmud Mogaji, attempted to motion to relist the case as it was struck down on July 6, 2015. Mr. Mogaji also moved for the leave to file and serve another affidavit as well as to file a witness’ testimony.
The court, presided over by Justice E. S. Chukwu, rebuked the plaintiff’s counsel, for serving the defence counsel with the documents in court when he expected the applications to be heard on the same day.
Earlier, counsel to Umana Okon Umana, Victor Iyanam, a former Attorney General of Akwa Ibom State indicated his intention to oppose all the motions brought by the plaintiff.
It would be recalled that soon after the APC primaries in 2014, Senator Udoedehe had proceeded to the Federal High Court in Abuja to challenge the emergence of Mr. Umana as the Governorship flag bearer of the APC.
The case suffered a delay due to the declaration of Udom Emmanuel as Governor and the subsequent Election Petition Tribunal proceedings.
However, in what legal observers described as an afterthought, Senator Udoedehe suddenly sought to revive the case which was earlier stroke out when Mr. Umana started a streak of electoral victories, beginning from the Election Petitions Tribunal to the Court of Appeal.
Legal experts who are familiar with the matter stated that Mr. Udoedehe was pursuing a hopeless cause as the Supreme Court has decided that the selection and sponsorship of a candidate is an internal affair of a political Party.
It is widely believed in Akwa Ibom State that Senator Udoedehe is being sponsored by external forces, notably the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), in order to enhance the prospects of Udom Emmanuel’s candidacy as Governor of the State.
The case has been adjourned to January 18, 2016, for continuation.