Kalu said he was buoyed by the court judgment.
The Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Benjamin Okezie Kalu, has hailed the Court of Appeal for upholding his election and also dismissing the petition of the Action Alliance (AA), which challenged his victory at the February 25, election for Bende Federal Constituency of Abia State.
In a statement by his Chief Press Secretary (CPS), Mr. Levinus Nwabughiogu, Kalu expressed gratitude to the judiciary for displaying the highest form of legal ingenuity in determining the case.
Also thanking God “for giving him victory in the election petitions brought against him,” the Deputy Speaker also reiterated his commitment and dedication to duty, adding that “the judgment which has now marked the end to the legal voyages in the aftermath of the 2023 general has buoyed him up for better service to his Bende federal constituency and Nigeria in general.”
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It will be recalled that the National Assembly Election Petitions Tribunal sitting in Umuahia, the State Capital had in August, struck out the petition of AA because the party’s candidate, Ifeanyi Chukwuka Igbokwe, told the panel that he did not file any legal suit against Kalu and subsequently alleged impersonation.
Igbokwe later petitioned the Police and the Department of the State Service (DSS), calling for the arrest and prosecution of his impersonators. However, the party filed an appeal on the matter.
On Sunday, October 15, Igbokwe at a press conference, insisted he never filed an appeal against Kalu, urging the police to go after his impersonators.
In its ruling on Thursday, October 19, 2023, the appeal court struck out the matter, describing it as a mere academic exercise.
Upholding Kalu’s election, the court further noted that the time limit provided by Section 285 of the Constitution on the appeal has elapsed, stating that it lacks the jurisdiction to entertain the matter.