A drama ensued on Friday at the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Enugu when two persons presented themselves to collect the certificate of return for the Nsukka/Igboeze South federal constituency.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the two persons, Mr Ikechukwu Ugwuegede and Dr Patrick Asadu, both members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), were engulfed in a legal tussle over the party’s candidacy for the election.
Asadu, a member of the House of Representatives, secured a ruling at the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja recognising him as the right candidate for the election.
Ugwuegede, however, appealed the ruling.
The two appeared at the INEC office during the presentation of certificates of return to the governor- elect and National Assembly members-elect but were denied the certificate.
Each of the candidates pleaded to the National Commissioner of INEC, Dame Gladys Nwafor, to collect the certificate but the commissioner declined.
Presenting the certificates, Nwafor, who is the INEC National Commissioner for Enugu, Imo and Ebonyi states, urged the elected officials to fulfill their campaign promises to the people.
According to her, today is a very unique day for the INEC and the government of Enugu State.
“We are here to give certificates of return to whom the electorate has given the mandate to serve the people.
“It has not been an easy task for both the commission and the contestants. I call it a divine mandate to serve the people.
“Enugu State is one of the most peaceful states and I am happy to be associated with the state,’’ she said.
In his acceptance speech, the governor-elect, Mr Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, promised to deliver selfless service to the people and take the state to the next level.
Ugwuanyi assured the people of a transparent and an all-inclusive government.
“We will not fail you. On behalf of everyone elected, I will like to say a big thank you to the God of David and Abraham for making this day possible.
“ I want to thank INEC for delivering credible and transparent elections. The people have spoken and God has sealed it,’’ he said.
Sen. Gilbert Nnaji who represents Enugu East and Mr Chukwuka Utazi elected to represent Enugu North, received their certificates.
Other National Assembly members-elect who received their certificates included Mr Chime Oji (Enugu North/South), Dr Kingsley Ebenyi (Enugu East/Isi-Uzo) and Dr Chukwuemeka Ujam (Nkanu East/Nkanu West).
Mrs Stella Ngwu (Igboetiti/Uzo Uwani), Mr Dennis Agbo (Udenu/Igboeze North) and Mr Dennis Amadi (Udi/Ezeagu) also received their certificates.
Sen.Ike Ekweremadu (Enugu West Senatorial Zone) and Chief Toby Okechukwu (Oji River/Awgu/Aninri constituency) were absent during the presentation.