A Federal High Court in Uyo has been asked to disqualify Nsima Ekere, the All Progressives Congress (APC) gubernatorial candidate in Akwa Ibom, from contesting in the governorship election on March 2, 2019 over non-resignation of his appointment as the Managing Director of NDDC and allegation N40 billion fraud, leading to his sack by President Muhammadu Buhari, Igbere Tv reports.
Igbere Tv learnt that the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) Managing Director, Nsima Ekere was dismissed from his position by President Buhari on, Friday, January 25, 2019 over an alleged N40 billion fraud.
The suit number FHC/UY/CS/14/19 was filed on January 28, 2019, by the Indigenous Contractors of NDDC against Nsima Ekere, Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and APC.
The plaintiffs are relying on Section 182(g) of the 1999 Constitution of Federal Republic of Nigeria.
The plaintiffs want the court to determine; “Whether in view of the provision of Section 182(g) of the Constitution of Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999, the 1st Defendant (Nsima Ekere) who did not resign, withdraw or retire from his employment as Managing Director of Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) but sacked/dismissed can be recognized by the 2nd defendant (INEC) to contest as a governorship candidate of the 3rd defendant (APC) in the forth coming elections slated for the 2nd of March 2019.”
They are seeking from the court; “A declaration that Nsima Ekere is not qualified for election to the office of Governor of the State slated for the 2nd March 2019 under the platform of the APC and should not be recognized by INEC having been sacked/dismissed from his employment as the Managing Director of the NDDC.”
In a nine paragraph affidavit sworn by the Indigenous Contractors of NDDC Ekere was also accused of embezzling N40 billion, which he allegedly used to acquire choice properties in Port Harcourt , Abuja and to also fund his campaign expenses.
The petitioners said over 50 dissent were made against Ekere for his removal based on the embezzlement and that it was the allegations that were upheld, leading to his sack.
The group had demonstrated at the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and National Assembly (NASS) on Monday and Tuesday January 21 and 22 of 2019 respectively, Igbere Tv reports.
Meanwhile the Akwa Ibom state APC have condemned the move, which they said is aimed at stripping them of a guber candidate, insisting that Ekere resigned 40 days before election as stipulated by the 1999 constitution.