2023: Disqualify Oduah over perjury, PDP chieftain tells court

By Ade ATAMBI, Abuja

A Federal High Court sitting in Abuja, Nigeria, has been asked to disqualify the Senator representing Anambra North in the Senate, Mrs Stella Adaeze Oduah over alleged involvement in perjury to obtain nomination for the 2023 senatorial election.

Joined as 2nd and 3rd defendants in the suit respectfully are the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, and the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC.

Stella Oduah was dragged before the court by a chieftain of the party, and Senatorial aspirant, Chief John Okechukwu Emeka, in the suit designated FHC/ABJ/CS/841/2022 through his counsel, Mbanefo Ikwegbue.

The plaintiff is asking the court, presided over by Justice Inyang Eden Ekwo for an order restraining Oduah from presenting herself forward as a Senatorial candidate of PDP in the next year’s election.

The PDP chieftain is further asking the judge to stop the main opposition from submitting the name of Senator Oduah as its candidate for the Anambra North senatorial election.

A similar order was sought against INEC to prohibit it from accepting Mrs Oduah from PDP and also from according her any right or privilege as a candidate in the next year’s election.

Chief Emeka hinged his suit on the ground that on October 23, 2014, Mrs Oduah allegedly committed perjury by making an affidavit on oath that she lost the original copy of her National Youth Service Corps, NYSC, discharge certificate when indeed, she possessed none.

He further claimed that the Senator committed another perjury in INEC form CF001 in 2015 and 2019 wherein she allegedly used false information to obtain nominations for the 2015 and 2019 senatorial elections.

The PDP Chieftain relied on a letter of May 24, 2022, by the Director-General of the NYSC to the effect that Mrs Oduah did not complete a mandatory one-year service with the Corps and was not issued with a discharge certificate or letter of exemption.

Maintaining that the Senator breached Sections 2 and 12 of the NYSC Act, the plaintiff prayed for an order nullifying the nomination of Oduah as PDP candidate for the 2023 senatorial election for Anambra North.

The plaintiff asked the court to compel PDP and INEC to submit his name as the candidate for the senatorial election having come second in the primary election that produced Oduah as a successful candidate.

Although the plaintiff sought to move an ex-parte application for an injunction to restrain the publishing of the name of Mrs Oduah, Justice Inyang Eden Ekwo however ordered the plaintiff to put all parties in the suit on notice.

The matter has been adjourned to June 23 for a definite hearing of the suit.

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