Why I Won’t Vacate My Seat - Senator Stephen Odey Says On Supreme Court Judgment
The Senator representing Cross River North, Stephen Odey, has said the recent judgement by the Supreme Court on the Cross River North senatorial seat did not sack him as a senator.
He also said that he will not vacate his seat because the Supreme Court didn’t declare it vacant.
He insisted that he remained the duly elected candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the December 5 bye-election – to replace Rose Oko, who died in March, 2020.
Mr Odey, who addressed newshounds in Abuja, also faulted the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) which he said, erred by using issuing a certificate of return to Jarigbe Agom, depending completely on the verdict of the Supreme Court.
Messrs Odey and Agom are of the equal political birthday party, PDP. Both men claim they are the elected senator representing Cross River North senatorial district.
However, legitimate files from INEC and its internet site show that Mr Odey become the PDP candidate of the December 5 bye-election in addition to winner of the election. He changed into issued a certificate of go back on December 7 and sworn in through the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, on December 16, 2020.
Mr Agom had filed fits in Port Harcourt and FCT High Courts seeking revocation of his nomination as the PDP candidate and restraining the senate president from swearing in Mr Odey respectively.
Two conflicting judgements from the FCT and Cross River High Courts first of all upheld Messrs Jarigbe and Odey respectively because the winner of the bye election.
The FCT Court of Appeal also upheld the High Court ruling that he ought to (Mr Jarigbe) be accorded the rights of the PDP candidate.
Sequel to this ruling, the electoral umpire issued Mr Agom certificate of go back on December 18 – an act which Mr Odey has faulted.
Both guys currently preserve separate Certificates of Return issued by using INEC and are awaiting the selection of the senate president.
‘INEC erred, I became no longer sacked’
In his interplay with reporters, Mr Odey stated not simplest did INEC err in issuing a certificate of go back to Mr Agom, however that the recent judgement by way of the Supreme Court is being misinterpreted by means of many.
Part of the ruling within the judgement visible by means of PREMIUM TIMES examine “that the preliminary objection on the competence of the service of the notice of appeal succeed.
“That the want to don't forget the troubles raised in the enchantment might consequently routinely bog down” which means they were not prepared to concentrate to anything that I wanted to speak about
“That the unsuitable and useless carrier complained of, strike out.”
The lawmaker maintained that the ruling did no longer declare his seat vacant or requested that he be sacked.
“The ultimate court docket struck out my appeal. I walked away. The order is clear.
“Did you spot where they said ‘sack senator Odey’ here? Did you notice wherein they stated they invalidated his certificates here? He even wrote a letter to the Clerk, announcing the Supreme Court judgement is in his favour, how?
“All court docket orders have to be expressed. You don’t study aim into a courtroom order. If a court does now not say this, you could’t pressure the court to say it.”
He further stated the degree where the rightful candidate became decided changed into resolved in two separate rulings by way of the Court of Appeal in Calabar.
When requested the present day state of affairs, Mr Odey said “There isn't any scenario. I am with ease seated because the senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. He may be going about with his certificates.”
He added that the PDP performed its position properly via issuing a letter to INEC announcing ‘this is my candidate’.
The celebration, he stated, also appealed to the Supreme Court announcing that Mr Jarigbe turned into now not their candidate.
Reacting to Mr Odey’s claim, INEC spokesperson, Festus Okoye, stated “the problem is completely out of the hand of the fee.”
“As at the day of the election, the fee issued a certificates of go back to Odey primarily based on the election and regulation.
“Thereafter, there was a court judgement and the fee issued a certificate of go back to Jarigbe primarily based on order.
“This isn't always the first time the fee is doing this. We have in the beyond issued a certificates of return and then a judgement will come and we can issue some other and another judgment will come and we are able to trouble and so on,” Mr Okoye informed PREMIUM TIMES on Monday.
“As a long way because the commission is involved, we have carried out our own component based on its information of the law. It is now left for the management of the National Assembly, the Senate President to make the selection.”[NewsNaira]