Members of the House of Representatives, Coalition of United Political Parties, CUPP; Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria, IPMAN and other well-meaning Nigerians have paid visits to give their full support to the member representing Ideato North/South Federal Constituency of Imo State, Hon. Ikenga Imo Ugochinyere, following the judgement of the Election Petitions Tribunal ordering his removal from office.
Recall that on September 10, outrage had greeted the judgement of the Imo State National and State Houses of Assembly Election Petitions Tribunal voiding Hon. Ugochinyere’s election over a pre-election matter and declared a supplementary election in Ideato Federal Constituency among the remaining candidates.
Following the judgement, stakeholders in the political, oil and gas sectors and several colleagues of Ugochinyere, have visited him in a show of solidarity to his commitment towards advancement of democracy.
Addressing the lawmaker in his office at the National Assembly complex in Abuja, the Secretary General of the CUPP, High Chief Peter Ameh, lauded Ugochinyere’s contributions to democracy, expressing optimism that the Appeal Court will overturn the judgement.
Ameh who’s also a chieftain of the Labour Party said the lawmaker was duly elected and is loved by his people and Nigerians as a whole, and any attempt to go against the will of the people and the rule of law won’t be tolerated.
He said, “I heard what happened, as a very intelligent and a capable hand in our democratic drive for good governance, we must come and show our support.
“I know what you’ve contributed to our Democratic process. We both served on the board of Inter-party Advisory Council where he contributed immensely to have an electoral framework that will promote free fair and credible process.
“What brought you on board is your charismatic type of leadership, things you have done to make sure the democratic space is devoid of any form of intimidation and Nigerians were happy when you won your election.
“Don’t fear, the law is very clear and the consistency in our law is the reason why we have sovereignty today and any attempt to deviate from that for purposes of intimidation or vengeance who has stood his ground who said no I will stand by the people rather than the oppressors of people. We need people like you to continue to be strong, good will triumph over evil.
“I know the Court of Appeal is seeing all these components of these judgement. The internal affairs of your party has nothing to do with the general election, which you participated and triumphed despite the attacks on you, the casualties along the line and you survived.
“The consequences of democracy shouldn’t be the loss of life , but you stood and said this process I must conclude. I’m very confident this judgement will be overturned.”
Meanwhile, ace journalist and human rights activist, Nonso Uba, during his visit to the lawmaker, assured him that the people’s mandate will stand and that the people of Ideato and Imo state were fully behind him.
He also thanked Ugochinyere, who’s the chairman of House of Representatives Committee on Petroleum Resources (Downstream), for securing his release from illegal detention by Imo State government.
He said, “The people’s mandate must stand. We came to see you, we were just coming from the court of you know my case, today is the first hearing. We are fighting the same course. The people’s messenger and solidarity and tell you that Imo people are behind you. Ideato People are behind you because you’re fighting for their emancipation and not your own.
“With Barrister Maxwell Opara, Mr. Walter Odo, we say we should come and pay this wonderful visit. This is the first time I’m coming here. We want to assure you that our people are behind you. Jisike, Ujo atula gi, the devil is fighting in vain. As far as the people are with you there’s nothing to fear. Soldier on my brother.”
Reacting, Ugochinyere thanked everyone for their support and tasked them to protect democracy by standing up against men who want to destroy the institution that can keep all of us safe.
“I welcome you and thank you for coming. The most important thing in all these is that when evil hovers over the land, when men who are unfit to be in office takes the driving seat. Society, rule of law, democracy will suffer.
“It’s our duty as children of God, who went to school, worked hard, never involved in immoral or criminal act to always stand up against these men who wants to destroy the institution that can keep all of us safe,” the lawmaker stated.