Setback for Apapa Faction as Court Rejects Bid to Exclude Labour Party Candidate in Imo Election

Legal Blow for Apapa Faction: Court Rejects Bid Against Labour Party Candidate in Imo Election

In a setback for the faction led by Lamidi Apapa, efforts to prevent the participation of the Labour Party’s governorship candidate, Athan Achonu, in the upcoming Imo State election faced a hurdle as the Federal High Court in Abuja declined their request.

Court Rejects Ex-Parte Application: Judge Orders Notification of INEC

The presiding Judge, Inyang Achonu, disagreed with an ex-parte application presented by Mohammed Ndarani Mohammed, counsel to the Apapa-led faction. Instead of granting the request, Justice Ekwo directed Apapa and his group to formally inform the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) about the lawsuit to allow the electoral body to present its defense.

Ex-Parte Application Details: Faction Seeks Injunction Against Recognition of Another Candidate

The faction, through the ex-parte application, had sought an interim injunction restraining INEC from recognizing any candidate other than Chief Ukaegbu Ikechukwu Joseph, who emerged from Apapa’s primary election on April 16, 2023.

They also demanded a mandatory injunction for INEC to acknowledge Ukaegbu Joseph as the genuine gubernatorial candidate and flagbearer of the party in Imo State.

Court’s Decision: Turning Ex-Parte Motion into Notice, Further Mention Set

Justice Ekwo, after hearing the arguments, declined to grant the requested injunction and instructed the faction to convert the ex-parte motion into a motion on notice.

He also directed them to serve the notice on INEC, the sole defendant in the case. The Judge stated, “I am not granting you this application today, and you have to bring INEC to Court to come and explain its own side in this matter.”

Next Steps: Further Mention Scheduled for November 10

The Judge fixed a further mention in the matter for November 10, providing an opportunity for Apapa’s faction to present their grievances formally and for INEC to respond with its defense.

This legal development adds complexity to the Imo State election landscape, with the court process shaping the path forward.

Conclusion: Legal Dynamics in Imo Election Dispute

The article concludes by highlighting the legal dynamics surrounding the dispute, emphasizing the court’s decision to turn down the ex-parte application and the upcoming proceedings scheduled for November 10. The implications of this legal development on the Imo State election become central to the ongoing narrative.

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