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No Certificate Of Return For Okorocha - INEC Insists

Okorocha will only be issued certificate on court order, says INEC

Funsho Akinwale

The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, has re-affirmed its decision not to issue a Certificate of Return to Imo State Governor, Rochas Okorocha, following allegations of declaring him winner under duress.

The electoral umpire made this affirmation on Thursday during a media briefing held at the commission’s headquarters in Abuja, with a vow to only issue the certificate on the order of either court judgement or election petition tribunal.

Festus Okoye, INEC’s Commissioner and Chairman of Information, while addressing the media, added that there were other candidates from Benue, Akwa Ibom and Niger State facing similar issues with Okorocha.

He noted that the position of the commission has not changed.

“Since the matter is already in court, the best thing to do is not to prejudge the matter that is in court, but to allow the judicial processes to run through.

“If at the end of the day, the court gives an order that we should give him his certificate of return, of course, the commission will obey such a court order.

“If on the other hand, the court takes a different position and makes other consequential orders in relation to the conduct of the elections in Imo West, we will also comply with whatever order the court gives.

“As of today, the matter is pending in court, the best thing to do is to wait for the outcome of the judicial process,” Okoye stated.

Okorocha, on Wednesday, dragged the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, to court for failure to issue him his Certificate of Return as the winner of Imo West Senatorial District.

The case is before the Federal High Court, Abuja, where he is seeking an order to compel INEC to give him his certificate.