Jime Vs Ortom: Again, Tribunal dismisses APC application to amend witness statement


Nigerian Concord Newspaper

The Benue State governorship election petition tribunal today, Tuesday dismissed an oral application by an All Progressives Congress, APC witness, Adoyi Ekpe to amend his defective and erroneous witness statement on oath.

When the tribunal resumed today, the witnes, Adoyi, from Ijigban, Ado LGA of Benue State, who was led in evidence by Emmanuel Jime’s lawyer, Sunday Ameh, SAN, made an oral application, seeking the leave of court to amend paragraphs 3,4 and 5 of his witness statement on oath.

Counsel to the Independent National Electoral Commission, Uyi Igunma opposed the application, saying it is incompetent as it is coming after 21 days from the declaration of result.

He added that the application been moved today has already been dealt with by the ruling of the tribunal yesterday when it was moved yesterday by the petitioners counsel.

Counsel to Governor Samuel Ortom, Sebastine Hon, SAN, submitted that parties are bound by the ruling of the tribunal which had already dismissed the same application when raised by Jime’s lawyer yesterday.

He submitted that the application is not well intended and should be dismissed, sighting the case of Omnia Nig Ltd vs Dyktrade Ltd 2007 and other relevant authorities to support his argument.

Counsel to the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Oba Maduabuchi, SAN, argued that an an oath cannot be amended verbally, it can only be ammended by an oath which must be sworn before a Commissioner for Oaths.

He urged the tribunal to dismiss the application, saying it is impossible to grant such.

Ruling on the matter, the tribunal Chairman, Justice Adebola Olusiyi ruled that the leave sought by the APC witness was not grantable, adding that the tribunal cannot overrule itself.

As at the time of this report, the witness was been cross examined on his defective and erroneous witness statement on oath with a nameless and codeless polling unit in Ijigban, Ado LGA.