The Abuja division of the Court of Appeal has set aside the judgment of the Federal High Court, Abuja, sacking Ebonyi State Governor, David Umahi, and his deputy, Eric Igwe, for defecting from the Peoples Democratic Party to the All Progressives Congress.
A three-member panel of the appellate court in their judgment on Friday, held that the 1999 Constitution did not provide any punishment for a governor or deputy governor who defected from the party on which platform he or she got into office.
In the lead judgment of the appellate court, Justice Haruna Tsanami held that the only option opened to a political party, aggrieved by the defection of a governor or deputy governor, is to explore the impeachment option provided in the Constitution.
The Court of Appeal in Abuja aligned with an earlier decision on the same issue given by the court’s Enugu division.
Justice Inyang Ekwo had in his judgment delivered on March 8, 2022, held that the total number of 393, 042 votes governor Umahi secured during the March 9, 2019 governorship election in Ebonyi state, belonged to the PDP and same could not be legally transferred to the APC.