The Independent National Electoral Commission Monday through its lawyer, Mr. Alhassan Umar, told a Federal High Court in Abuja that it issued a certificate of return to Uche Ogah, on June 28, recognising him as governor-elect of Abia State, in compliance with the order made in the judgment of the court delivered June 27.
This was made known when a motion seeking a stay of the execution of the judgment sacking Okezie Ikpeazu as the governor of the state and also ordering the issuance of certificate of return to Ogah came up for hearing on Monday. INEC through its lawyer had the following to say:
1. INEC had already issued the certificate of return before the processes of the notice of appeal against the judgment and a motion for stay of execution of the judgment, both filed by Ikpeazu, were served on the commission.
2.That the notice of appeal and the motion for stay of execution of the judgment did not operate as a stay of execution of a court’s verdict in a pre-election case.
3.That the law will expressly state so if it intends to make a notice of appeal to operate as a stay of execution in a pre-election case.
4.The Lawyer pointed out that why a notice of appeal operated as a stay of execution of a judgment delivered by an election petition tribunal in an election petition was because it was expressly provided for under section 143(1) of the Electoral Act.