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» » » » DRAMA AS VICTOR UMEH'S WITNESSES TESTIFY IN SENATOR UCHE EKWUNIFE’S FAVOUR
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There was a mild drama at the Anambra Central Senatorial zone Election Petition Tribunal few days ago as two out of four witnesses brought by the All Progressives Grand Alliance candidate, Chief Victor Umeh testified in favour of Senator Uche Ekwunife.

Four witnesses brought by Chief Victor Umeh against Senator Uche Ekwunife (PDP-Anambra Central) testified over the March 28 senatorial poll.

They testified before the Justice Nayai Aganaba three-member tribunal after adopting their written statements on oath under cross examination by respondents’ counsel on Wednesday.

One of Chief Umeh' s witnesses and APGA’s collation agent for Idemili South Local Government Area, Mr Chijioke Agbayim, said that the election was peaceful in all the polling units in the area.

Agbayim however said that INEC collation officers created a barrier from allowing him to compare results being collated from forms EC8B to EC8C.

Also in his testimony, APGA’s constituency collation agent for the senatorial district, Mr Chikodi Anarah, maintained that the election was peacefully conducted at the polling units while results were l recorded in form EC8A1.

“However, other constituency collation agents and I were confined away from where the Returning Officer was entering results from forms EC8C1 to EC8D1,” he said.

Dr Pius Okoye, the Returning Officer for the senatorial election and a lecturer at the Department of Accountancy, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, however maintained that Mrs. Uche Ekwunife won the polls.

“After collation of result, it was my duty to announce the final result. 
“I declared the result on March 30. I mistakenly wrote March 29 because collation started late on March 29 and ended early March 30. 

“I did not refuse any party agent from witnessing the transfer of results from forms EC8C1 to EC8D1.

“I collated all results from the seven Local Government Areas of the senatorial constituency and at the end, declared the PDP candidate, Mrs. Uche Ekwunife winner having obtained the highest number of votes cast.

“The figures collated were not fictitious,” Okoye, who said he was a Chartered Accountant, maintained.

He added that the election was free and fair, and was conducted in substantial compliance with the Electoral Act, 2010.

On his part, an Industrial Training Consultant and Computer Expert and Forensic analyst, Mr. Lawrence Ede, after his analysis, observed that he was not an expert in election matter.

The Forensic expert who was brought by APGA candidate further said his final computed figure was different from the declared result.
The witness also concurred that some mistakes made during computation rendered his report inaccurate, adding that PDP still won the poll by both his report and that declared by INEC.

Daily Sun reports that the tribunal adjourned the petition till July 30 when Umeh is expected to testify.

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