Exposed: APC Moves to Blackmail A’Ibom Guber Tribunal Judge
*** As Witness Fingers Presidential Aide, Others Sing Discordant Tunes
Emerging facts have indicated that the All Progressives Congress have commenced an in depth move to dig into the the personality and history of Justice A. M. Yakubu who is the chairman of the Akwa Ibom state Governorship petitions tribunal.
Also revealed, is an attempt by the petitioner’s Counsel to manipulate the tribunal in order to get the petitioner, Nsima Ekere appear and testify on Sunday.
Reason for their recourse to Sunday, we gathered is not unconnected with their desire to present their candidate on an irregular day, when the defense Counsels would have traveled for the weekend.
Some members of the APC legal team are allegedly on a voyage to Gombe, home state of the tribunal Chairman to comb for any piece of information that they feel could be used to armtwist the tribunal’s head and turn the tide in their favour.
Their move to embark on the smear campaign, follows the current poor run of witnesses who have been singing discordant tunes, as well as their inability to successfully relocate the tribunal to Abuja, where they feel the panel could easily be intimidated and ‘talked’ to by their political bosses.
The reported plans to have Nsima testify while the PDP senior lawyers had travelled out of the state, further indicates that the petitioner is running out of confidence.
Meanwhile, the Governorship Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Uyo, has been told that the Presidential Adviser on Senate Matters, Senator Ita Enang ordered disruption of elections in some parts of Ibiono Ibom, his local government area.
An APC Unit Agent in Akanobio, Ibiono Ibom LGA, David who was Nsima Ekere’s witness, said that on arrival of election materials, he asked for the original result sheet as he was instructed by Enang, but the INEC Presiding Officer (PO) said it was with the Returning Officer (RO).
Witness said he immediately called Enang to relay that the returning officer and not the presiding officer is with the result form, but Enang ordered him to mobilize other APC supporters and ensure that election doesn’t hold in the unit.
Recounting his experience, David told the tribunal that he tried all he could with his supporters to stop the INEC officials from conducting election, but the election went on.
An indigene of Nsit Atai LGA, David Edet, on Cross Examination by Assam Assam SAN, Counsel to Governor Udom Emmanuel, contradicted himself on alleged assault and vote buying by the PDP.
“In your deposition, you said members of your party, APC, were assaulted” Assam asked.
“Yes My Lord”, was Edet’s response.
“Did you witness any of the violence?” Assam
“Yes My Lord” Edet
“But in paragraph 5 of your witness statement, you stated that you only received distress calls from polling unit agents” Assam reminded him.
“Yes My Lord” Edet muttered.
“APC supporters, were there in a group?” Assam asked again.
“No My Lord” Edet answered.
Assam: “Whose votes were the PDP trying to buy?”
Edet: “All votes in Ward 7”
Assam: “Were there elections in your unit?”
“Since there was no election, what were the PDP buying votes for?” Assam
“They were buying minds My Lord” Edet answered, sending the courtroom into laughter.
Another Witness, Akpan Uwem Okon on Cross Examination by Assam Assam SAN, also contradicted himself by saying that he did not see any void vote, after alleging in his Witness Statement that a woman used ink to void votes of the APC.
“How many void votes did you see in your polling unit?” Assam asked.
“I did not see any because elections ended” was Okon’s response.
“But you said in your Witness Statement that a woman used ink to void votes of the APC” Assam
“Yes My Lord, I did” Okon
“Did you see the result sheet, Form EC8A of your polling unit?” Assam
“I did not see” Okon
“But in your witness statement, you alleged that you were bribed to sign form EC8A with fifty thousand naira” Assam
“Yes My Lord, I did” Okon
On cross Examination by Uko Udom SAN, Counsel to the PDP, Okon who had earlier told the Tribunal that PDP thugs drove APC supporters away later said electorates voted without intimidation at voting point.
“Did you vote in the election?” Udom asked?
“Yes My Lord” Okon replied.
“How many people were there when you went into the cubicle to vote?” Udom asked again.
“I was alone”, responded Okon.
“Can you describe the voting process of your unit?” Udom
“After presentation of PVC, you are accredited and given a ballot paper, you walk to the cubicle, thumb print and put the ballot paper in the ballot box” Okon contradicted himself.
A Polling Unit Agent for APC in Ikot Ekpene LGA, Offiong Basey Ekanem on Cross Examination by Uko Udom SAN, failed to prove how alleged PDP thugs intimidated the APC supporters from voting.
“Are you sure you performed your duties as a polling unit agent?” Udom asked.
“Yes” said Ekanem
“Did you vote at the election?” Udom again asked.
“Yes, I voted” Ekanem again affirmed.
“Were you paid by the PDP to vote?” Udom probed further.
“I was not paid”, Ekanem candidly replied.
“You were not chased away by the PDP?” the PDP Lawyer asked yet still;
“We refused to yield to intimidation” was Ekanem’s reply.
At this point the PDP Counsel, amidst smiles asked, “What kind of arms did the thugs carry?”
Ekanem stunned everyone when he said that he saw the alleged thugs carrying “Planks and woods” to scare away people.
“Despite their planks and woods, you were not intimidated or chased away?” Udom asked; to which Ekanem responded,
“I refused to be”.
An indigene of Ndiya, Nsit Ubium LGA, Jonathan Idiong David exposed that he voted during the 2019 Governorship Elections after alleging that APC supporters were not allowed to vote.
“Only those with valid PVCs are allowed to vote” Assam
“Yes My Lord” David
“Did you vote?” Assam
“Yes My Lord” David
“In paragraph 6 of your witness statement, you said the APOs did not allow people to vote” Assam reminded him.
“Yes My Lord, I did” David replied.
On Cross Examination of David, Counsel to INEC, Sylva Oguwemoh, notified the Tribunal that the Witness does not know where he hails from.
“Your LGA is different from Nsit Ibom” Oguwemoh
“Yes My Lord” David
“Paragraph 1 of your Witness Statement carries a registration designation for Nsit Ibom” Oguwemoh
David after stammering replied that “Ndiya is in Nsit Ubium not Nsit Ibom”