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Abia tribunal: Nkwonta closes case against Abaribe

Mr Chris Nkwonta, the candidate of the All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA) for Abia South Senatorial District on Monday closed his case against Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe of the Peoples Democratic Party and two other respondents.

Nkwonta had approached the National Assembly Elections Petitions Tribunal, sitting in Umuahia, to nullify the declaration of the Senate Minority Leader as the winner of the February 23 poll.

He called 34 witnesses although his council, Mr Ken Ahia (SAN), told the tribunal that he had seven more witnesses but decided to drop them for want of time.

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Ahia said that he chose to close his case to allow the respondents time to put up their defence, pointing out that time was of the essence to the panel.

One of the witnesses, Kenneth Ijeoma, a Ward Collation agent for APGA in Ward 4, Ugwunagbo Loal Government Area, told the panel that the election in all the units under his watch was marred by irregularities.

News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Nkwonta is urging the tribunal to nullify Abaribe’s election and declare him the winner.

He claimed to have won a majority of the lawful votes cast at the poll.

The Chairman of the panel, Justice Adeyinka Aderibigbe, adjourned sitting to Thursday, for the first respondent – the Independent National Electoral Commission – to open its defence. (NAN)