Senatorial Seat: Court nullifies election of Senator Akpan, orders INEC to withdraw his certificate of return
Declares Hon Bassey Etim as authentic PDP flag-bearer, winner of senatorial poll
Orders Akpan to refund all salaries, allowances he’d collected
A Federal High Court sitting in Uyo has voided the election of Senator Bassey Albert Akpan, who represented Akwa Ibom Northeast Senatorial district at the upper chamber of the National Assembly.
The court anchored its decision on the finding that Senator Akpan was not duly elected in the primaries of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) held on December 7, 2014.
The trial judge, Justice Fatun Riman, said Senator’s Bassey’s election had to be voided because it was impossible to put something on nothing.
The judge consequently ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to withdraw the certificate of return issued to him and awarded N200, 000 costs in favour of the plaintiff, Mr. Bassey Etim.
The judge also ordered Akpan to refund to the Federal Government, the salaries and allowances that he earned during his stay in the Senate.
Subsequently, Justice Riman directed INEC to issue a fresh certificate of return to Etim, whom, he said, was the authentic winner in the PDP primaries.
The defence counsel, Mr. Offiong Offiong, told journalists that he would brief his client before deciding on the next line of action.
But counsel to the plaintiff, Mr. Taiwo Abe, described the judgment as a victory for democracy and a dark age for impunity.