By Nsan Ndoma-Neji, Calabar
The Cross River State Commissioner for Education, Senator Stephen Odey, Ph D, has described the affirmation of the victory of the state governor in the March 18 gubernatorial election by the Governorship Election Petition Tribunal as commendable.
The tribunal, sitting in Calabar, in Tuesday, in its judgment affirmed the victory of Senator Prince Bassey Otu, of the All Progressives Congress, APC, after a careful examination of facts presented before it.
Odey made the remarks while speaking with our correspondent in Calabar on Tuesday, shortly after judgment upheld Otu’s election as duly elected governor of Cross River State.
Congratulating the Governor Otu, and his deputy, Rt. Hon. Peter Odey, on their victory at the Governorship Election Petition Tribunal, Odey stated that with the victory, Otu can now focus on governance.
He said, “The tribunal did well in upholding the APC candidate’s election after cross checking facts, and declared that the petition of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, and it’s candidate lacked merits and that the petitioners had no locus standing to institute the petition.
“This is where Otu’s persecutors should beg for forgiveness and join hands with Otu in moving the state forward. After all, in matters of this nature, we can say there is no victor and no vanquish.”
Recall that the petition filed by the governorship candidate of the PDP, Ntufam Prof. Sandy Onor, against Governor Otu was struck out by the judges for lack of merit.
Odey, who is the immediate past senator representing Cross River North senatorial district at the upper chamber of the National Assembly expressed satisfaction with the judgement, stressing that it is victory for all.
He added, “We remain grateful to the good people of Cross River State, who voted overwhelmingly for the governor and his deputy. They can continue to enjoy the ‘season of sweetness,’ which has come to stay.
“May I congratulate Prince Otu for his resounding victory at the tribunal; it is only an affirmation of the people’s trust through their mandate freely bequeathed on him.
“I never expected anything less of this judgement as one could clearly see the end from the beginning, considering the overwhelming support Senator Prince Otu enjoyed right from the campaign to the elections proper.
“With this judgement, the judiciary has demonstrated without contradiction that it remains the conscience of the state and the last hope for justice.
“I urge Prof. Onor to close ranks with the governor and join him to build the Cross River that we can all be proud of.”