ABIA STATE —The GOVERNOR of Abia State yesterday took to appeal court to file against Monday’s judgment of a Federal High Court in Abuja which removed him from office as governor and asked the Appeal Court to set aside the judgment of Justice Okon Abang.
In a notice of appeal filed by Chief Adegboyega Awomolo, his humble lawyer, faulted the high court judgment on five grounds, saying that the Federal High Court lacked the power to order him to vacate the seat of Abia State Governor. The Governor argued that “the trial judge erred in law when he ordered as a consequential order that the appellant vacates his office as the Governor of Abia state immediately when there was no jurisdiction in the Federal High Court to remove or vacate the occupier of the office of the governor of a state or order the removal of such officer after the unsuccessful challenge of the result of the election at the Tribunal and swearing in of the appellant as the governor”. According to him, “the only power, authority and order exercisable by the Federal High Court was to disqualify the candidate from contesting the election based on section 31(6) of the Electoral Act 2010”. Governor Ikepazu also faulted the judgment on the decision that he did not pay his tax for the years 2011, 2012 and 2013, when due, when, according to him, “he was a public officer whose tax deduction was under Pay As You Earn, PAYE, scheme where tax deductions were taken from the source of his monthly salary by the tax authorities who issued all the tax receipts and certificates”. Meanwhile his party ‘PDP’ has also rejected the judgment and filed a separate appeal urging the Appeal court to reverse the decision of the lower court. has advised Governor Ikpeazu not to allow the court verdict to derail his development plan, urging him to remain focused.