Tuesday’s testimony of a subpoenaed witness from the Independent National Election Commission (INEC), Dimas Friday Emmanuel, at the ongoing Enugu State governorship election petition tribunal is being given different interpretations by camps of the Peoples Democratic Party and the Labour Party…Continue Reading
The witness was called by the governorship candidate of the Labour Party, Barr Chijioke Edeoga, to testify on the validity of the NYSC discharge certificate submitted to the commission by Governor Peter Mbah.
The witness had under cross-examination by Mbah’s lawyer, Chief Wole Olanipekun (SAN), stated that Mbah’s NYSC discharge certificate was forwarded to the NYSC for authentication, adding that NYSC ‘certifies only a document emanating from it’.
During a further cross-examination by the counsel to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Dr Alex Iziyon (SAN), the witness admitted that Mbah’s NYSC discharge certificate carried a stamp of the NYSC, hence certified.
A PDP chieftain in the state, James Ozoeme, told our correspondent that, “The fact that the certificate was certified authentic by NYSC makes Edeoga’s case dead on arrival.”
However, Ezugwu Chimguzorom, a supporter of LP, has a different interpretation. According to him, “Labour Party’s counsel applied for the certificate to be accepted as exhibits which the court admitted. PDP and Peter Mbah’s lawyers objected to it, except INEC, but at the end, the court admitted it.”
Another LP member, who refused to be mentioned, said, “The subpoenaed INEC official tendered Mbah’s form EC9 containing his particulars and all the documents he submitted to INEC. The document was certified by INEC as emanating from its office as required by the Evidence Act, not necessarily a validation of the originality or the authenticity of any document, which only the issuing authority can authenticate as settled by Supreme Court.”
A lawyer, Ikechukwu Ozioko, told our correspondent on Friday that the cause of misinformation about the proceedings at the tribunal is because only petitioners and respondents and their counsel ‘are allowed into the courtroom because of the limited space’.
Quoting him, “Information emanating from the tribunal is gotten through secondary sources. Not even journalists are freely allowed into the courtroom because of space. So, getting authentic information from the court is at times difficult. That is why we read many conflicting stories from the tribunal…Continue reading