Election tribunal: SDP senatorial candidate, APC Cross River Assembly contenders withdraw petitions

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The senatorial candidate of the Social Democratic Party, SDP, for Cross River Central Senatorial district in the 2019 election, Solomon Idor Esor has withdrawn his petition from the election tribunal.

The petitioner was challenging the omission of his party logo in the ballot paper. His application to withdraw the suit number EPT/CAL/S/02/2019 was granted unopposed by the respondents and the matter was subsequently struck out by the three-man tribunal led by the chairman of the tribunal, Justice Vincent M. Agbata.

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The tribunal also considered two separate applications from the All Progressives Congress APC candidates in the elections to the State house of assembly seats for Calabar South State constituency II and Bakassi State constituency; Victor Nsa and Dr. Nakanda Bassey seeking to withdraw their petitions challenging the victory of the Peoples’ Democratic Party candidates – Hon. Joseph Bassey of Calabar South State constituency II and Dr. Ekpo-Ekpo Bassey of Bakassi State constituency seat.

The APC candidates, in their separate applications before the tribunal, cited a financial inability to continue the case, while the SDP candidate, Solomon Idor Esor gave as his reason for the withdrawal, his inability to be personally present in the country to pursue the case.

Counsel to the SDP candidate, Joseph Oloko Esq, explained that his client was unlawfully excluded from the elections and he petitioned in line with constitutional provisions, but having considered that he has some other things he will be doing outside the country, he requested that his petition be withdrawn.

Senator-elect to the central senatorial seat, Dr. Sandy Onor of the Peoples’ Democratic Party expressed his delight over the development, saying he is “very thankful”, saying the election in all humility was a resounding victory for his party and his person and an “accumulation of a long period of service to our people and my desire to do more  at the national.”

He further said, “For anything else to happen it will be undermining the legitimacy of the victory. So I am delighted that my friend and brother has found it necessary to withdraw.

“I permanently wave the olive branch to my elder brother and one of our Icons, distinguished Senator Victor Ndoma-Egba SAN of the APC, and without being subjudice to understand that it is in the interest of our people to have him withdraw his own matter as well. I do hope in due season he shall do so”.

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The petition filed by Senator Victor Ndoma-Egba of the APC is also challenging exclusion from the race on the basis of delisting of names of candidates of the party which was officially announced by the Resident Electoral Commissioner of INEC in the state, few hours to the election.

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