Paul Osuyi, Asaba
The senator representing Delta Central, Ovie Omo-Agege, has said that he is unperturbed by Monday’s court judgement that invalidated his nomination as the senatorial candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the just concluded general elections.
Omo-Agege in a statement by his Senior Special Adviser, Communication and Strategy, Godwin Anaughe, said he remains the senator-elect for Delta Central.
The Federal High Court in Asaba had in judgment, not only nullified the Jones Erue-led state executive committee of the APC but also declared as null, void and of no effect, all actions taken on behalf of the party in the state by Erue and his executive.
But Omo-Agege faulted the court, saying that there was a subsisting consent judgment of the Federal High Court, Abuja that validated the Erue executive, adding that the said consent judgement had neither be appealed nor set aside by any competent court of jurisdiction.
Besides, Omo-Agege said the Asaba Federal High Court did not make a declarative order for his certificate of return to be withdrawn by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), and be re-issued to those parading themselves as authentic candidates of the APC.
“The electoral college that elected Senator Omo-Agege and Rev Waive as APC candidates in the just concluded 2019 general elections came into being by virtue of a consent judgement that has not been set aside.
“It is still a valid, subsisting judgement until it is set aside by a court of competent jurisdiction; therefore, their election into their respective positions remains valid.
“Second, there is no consequential order made by Justice Toyin Adegoke for INEC) to withdraw the certificate of return duly issued to Senator Omo-Agege and Rev. Waive and to be re-issued to those who are now parading themselves as the valid candidates for the just concluded 2019 general elections, neither was there any order made against the persons of distinguished Senator Omo-Agege and Rev. Francis Waive, as they were not parties to the suit and as such are not bound by the said judgement.
“Third, the court in the judgement, in its wisdom held that the consent judgement is not binding on Cyril Ogodo and co. because they were not parties to that suit; it becomes trite that the judgement also cannot bind on Senator Omo-Agege and Rev. Waive because they were also not joined as parties to this present suit,” the statement read.
In a related development, the APC in the state has urged its faithful to disregard the judgment, saying that it was at variance with the consent judgment that gave legitimacy to the Erue-led state executive committee.
The party in a statement by the Director of Communication, Nick Ovuakporie, “queried the real intendment of the judgement,” saying that the trial justice “was aware of a consent judgement issued by a competent court of co-ordinate jurisdiction which validated the election of Prophet Jones Ode Erue and his exco at the party congresses as validly elected.
“The party wishes to state unequivocally that Prophet Jones Ode Erue is the chairman of the APC in Delta State and same is not contentious.”