The Appeal Court’s decision to nullify the election of Governor Udom Emmanuel in line with the appeal of Okon Umana, candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the April 11 election, has been greeted with jubilation in the state.
Shortly after the appellate court, sitting in Abuja, nullified the entire poll of the April 11 governorship election and upheld the ruling of the tribunal, residents of the state, believed to be APC supporters, shut down traffic in Uyo, the state capital to celebrate the court ruling, Sahara Reporters reports.
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Udom had been declared by the INEC as the winner in the April 11 governorship election alleged to be one of the most controversial in the history of elections in the country.
It was reported that the election was allegedly marred with violence, harassment of voters, hijacking of election materials and unprecedented rigging which made international and local observers to pass a unanimous verdict that it was a sham and recommended a complete cancellation of the exercise.
The APC which is the main opposition in the state also came out strongly to decry the conduct of the exercise.
The APC said there was no election in the state as it accused the former governor Godswill Akpabio who is now a minority leader at the Senate, of allegedly deploying state machinery to rig the election and overturn the popular wish of the people.
As a result of this, the APC and its candidate, Umana Okon Umana, had to challenge the victory at the tribunal seeking a cancellation of the purported election.
In its ruling, the election petitions tribunal ordered a re-run governorship election in 18 out of the 31 local government areas in Akwa Ibom, but the Appellate court has now nullified the entire election.
(PHOTO CREDIT: Sahara Reporters)