There is palpable tension in both Imo and Sokoto states as the apex court announced that it would deliver judgment on the petitions against the declaration of Emeka Ihedioha, as the governor of Imo State and Aminu Tambuwal as governor of Sokoto State by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), today.
While members of the Peoples Democratic Party are upbeat that the Supreme Court would uphold Ihedioha and Tambuwal’s victories, members of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) are hopeful that the judgment would go in their favour.
The Director of Imo Orientation Agency, Martin Opara, told our correspondent that there was no cause for alarm despite the tension, expressing optimism that the apex court would uphold the governor’s election.
He said that the declaration of Ihedioha as governor was in tandem with the Electoral Act as against the position of the petitioners.
Opara said “there is no cause for alarm. The governor will win at the Supreme Court as he won at the tribunal and the Court of Appeal, respectively. This is a governor that was voted by the majority of our people.”
But the APC Chairman in the state, Daniel Nwafor, said that he was hopeful that the judgment would go in favour of his party.
However, in order to check excesses of criminal elements who might want to take advantage of the situation to loot, the state police command has deployed well over 1, 000 combat policemen to strategic locations across the state capital, and other vulnerable areas.
Similarly, no fewer than 1,000 police personnel, including plain clothed officials, have been deployed by the Sokoto State Police Command across the state ahead of today’s Supreme Court ruling on the appeal by the Sokoto State governorship candidate on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Ahmed Sokoto on the 2019 general and rerun polls.
The development was disclosed, yesterday in Sokoto by the Commissioner of Police, Ibrahim Kaoje.
He said the measure was to ensure peace reigns before and after the ruling.
Ka’oje explained that the command would focus on the Sokoto metropolis and its environs as well as on some strategic locations within their environs.
“We are on a 24-hour red alert and we are on standby, round the clock, 24/7. We will not waiver in our sustained routine and surprise tactics to keep the peace.
“We will leave no stone upturned in keeping the state safe and secure, for all the law abiding residents to conduct their lawful businesses,” the police boss assured.
He vowed the strategy would be maintained until further notice, in line with the recent directive issued by the Inspector General of Police ( IGP), on a 24-hour, nationwide red alert.
He further expressed delight that zero-violence was witnessed during last Friday’s congregational prayers across the state.
“The massive deployment of our officers and men has by the special grace of God, paid off and we will not relent in our efforts.
“This is to ward off any unpatriotic persons from breaching the peace, as well as the unrepentant criminals,” the CP, added.
The APC candidate had dragged Governor Aminu Waziri Tambuwal of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) before the Supreme Court over his re-election.
He challenged the judgements of the Governorship Election Petition Tribunal and that of the Appeal Court that all dismissed his petitions, for lack of merit.
The Tribunal and Appeal Court had dismissed APC’s petition for lacking in merits on October 2, and November 22, 2019, respectively.
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