Naija News had reported earlier the Supreme court sacked Emeka Ihedioha as governor of Imo state and affirmed Uzodinma as the winner of the March 9 governorship election.
Giving judgment on the election on Tuesday, a seven-man panel of justices in a unanimous decision, held that Ihedioha did not win the majority of votes cast in the election.
Justice Kudirat Kekere-Ekun, who read the judgment, ordered INEC to withdraw the certificate of return issued to Ihedioha and give a fresh one to his APC rival.
“The votes due to the appellant, Hope Uzodinma and the All Progressives Congress (APC) from 388 polling units were wrongly excluded from scores ascribed to them,” Justice Kekere-Ekun ruled.
“It is hereby ordered that Emeka Ihedioha, was not duly elected by majority of lawful votes cast at the said election. His return as the elected governor of Imo state is hereby declared null and void and accordingly set aside.
“It is hereby declared that the first appellant (Uzodinma) holds the majority of lawful votes cast at the governorship election held in Imo State on March 9, 2019, and has satisfied the mandatory constitutional requirement.
“It is hereby declared that first appellant, senator Hope Uzodinma is the winner of the governorship of Imo State held on March 9, 2019.
“The certificate issued to the first respondent (Ihedioha) is hereby withdrawn. It is hereby ordered that the certificate of return shall be issued to the first appellant, senator Hope Uzodinma, forthwith and he should be sworn in as the governor of Imo State,” the judge added.
Reacting to the judgment in a statement, the PDP questioned the emergence of Uzodinma as the governor of Imo State on the grounds that he came fourth in the election which its candidate won.
The statement reads as thus; “The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) is surprised at the judgment of the Supreme Court on the Imo state governorship election describing it as yet another very sad commentary on our nation’s democratic order.
“The Party finds it difficult to understand how Senator Hope Uzodinma/APC, who came 4th in the March 9, 2019 governorship election, with just 96,458 votes, will suddenly, by the token of the judgment of the Supreme Court, defeat Gov Emeka Ihedioha/PDP that scored 276,404 votes.
“In fact, the PDP and indeed, most Nigerians are still at a loss as to understand the basis upon which the Supreme Court arrived at its decision.
“The party says it is lamentable that the destiny of the people of Imo state is being taken from the governor they chose and voted for and handed over to individuals and a political party that do not have their blessing and mandate and which they rejected at the election.
“The people of Imo state are now confronted with the challenge of having a government that they cannot identify with and which cannot connect with them, having not emanated from them.
“Moreover, all the gains, including the development and stability already achieved by the people-based government, under Governor Emeka Ihedioha/PDP administration in the state are now heavily jeopardized.
Indeed, the mournful and despondent ambience that now pervades in Imo state is a loud testimony that the judgment did not reflect the expectation of the people of Imo state as expressed at the polls.
“While recognising that the judgment of the Supreme Court is final, the PDP, however, urges all party stakeholders in the state to remain united and calm, and await further instruction from the national leadership on this very sad development,” the statement added.