The second judge presiding over Imo State governor, Rochas Okorocha’s certificate of return suit, Justice Okon Abang, has withdrawn from the case.
Okorocha, in the suit, seeks an order compelling the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to issue him a certificate of return as the senator-elect for Imo West.
A judge of the Federal High Court Abuja, Justice Taiwo Taiwo, who withdrew on April 10 was first assigned to preside over the case, after which Justice Okon Abang was assigned.
Justice Abang was said to have on April 11 fixed April 18 for hearing in the suit. He, however, announced his decision to withdraw from the suit on the fixed date. Punch reports.
Abang was said to have withdrawn from the case, following Okorocha’s letter to the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court, Justice Adamu Abdu-Kafarati, asking for the transfer of the case to another judge.
Seeing the letter in the file, Abang, without delay, informed parties of his withdrawal from the suit.
Like Abang, Justice Taiwo had also withdrawn from the suit following allegations of bias levelled against him by two parties to the suit.
INEC’s refusal to issue Okorocha a certificate of return came after the returning officer for the February 23 elections, Francis Ibeawuchi, claimed that the governor was declared winner under duress.