Justice Nnamdi Dimgba made the order in his judgment delivered in a suit filed by the plaintiff, a candidate for the party’s organising secretary in the party’s last national convention, Osita Izunaso.
Izunaso, by his suit, challenged the election to the office of the National Organising Secretary of the party.
Justice Dimgba agreed with the plaintiff and ruled that the exhibits provided in court proved that the election was marred by violence, irregularities and non-compliance with the provisions of the Electoral Act and the party’s guidelines.
Izunaso had asked the court to determine whether the election into the office of National Organising Secretary of APC was marred by violence.
The plaintiff said some thugs, numbering up to 100, disrupted the election.
He alleged that the thugs broke the ballot box making it impossible for votes of delegates from Jigawa, Adamawa, Anambra, Abia and Imo states to be counted.
He claimed that if the votes of those delegates were counted, they would have bridged the 290 vote margin between him and Ibediro.
This he alleged led to the disenfranchisement of delegates from some states.
He urged the court to hold that as a result of the disenfranchisement of some of the delegates, it was wrong for the APC to declare Emma Ibediro winner of the election which he said was inconclusive.
The Independent National Electoral Commission, the APC and Ibediro were named as defendants in the matter.
Delivering judgment on Monday, Justice Dimgba ruled that the election did not follow the Electoral Act and the guidelines made by the party for the convention.
The court further noted that the defendants had not presented an effective defence to the claims made by the plaintiff and as such, it was bound by the evidence before it.
On the allegations that the thugs acted on the authority of Ibediro, Dimgba said it was not clear on whose authority the thugs acted but that what was clear was that their actions disrupted the election.
The court also said that INEC failed in its duty as an election monitor, adding that its dereliction of duty was evident in its monitoring report.
“In the report, INEC said that the election was conducted in line with guidelines of the 2018 APC elective convention and so it failed in its monitoring function with respect to election into the office of the National Organising Secretary,” the judge ruled.
He, therefore, ordered that the APC should within 30 days, as prayed by the plaintiff, conduct a fresh election for the five states that were disenfranchised.
He also ordered INEC to monitor the repeat election as the body empowered to monitor the smooth conduct of elections in the country.
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