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No Date Set for Imo and Bayelsa By-elections

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The Independent National Electoral Commission has said it has yet to fix a date for the by-elections for the Bayelsa West and Central Senatorial Districts.

The bye-elections were necessitated by the vacancies created by the recent declaration by INEC that Governor Douyle Diri and his Deputy, Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo, won the governorship election conducted on November 16 2019.

The commission also said it would soon give details about the by-election for the Imo North Senatorial District following the death of Senator Benjamin Uwajumogu.

INEC Director (Voter Education and Publicity), Oluwole Osaze Uzzi, gave these hints in an interview with us, in Abuja, on Monday.

He said, “The date for the election of Bayelsa bye-elections will be made known to the public shortly and after a decision is made by the commission and Imo when a vacancy is declared and communicated by the Senate President.”

Meanwhile, a member of the Board of Trustees of the All Progressive Grand Alliance, Dr David Onuoha-Bourdex, has warned against declaring vacant, the Abia North Senatorial District, saying its occupant has filed an appeal against his conviction by a Federal High Court in Lagos.

According to him, until that appeal was dispensed with, the Senate or INEC could not do otherwise.

Recall that a Federal High Court in Lagos had late last year, sentenced to 12 years’ imprisonment, Senator Orji Kalu (the Senate Majority Whip), for diverting the sum of N7.2bn while in office as governor of Abia State.

Onuoha-Bourdex in a statement by his media aide, said, “The occupant of Abia North Senate seat and Senate Chief Whip, Senator Orji Uzor Kalu, has filed an appeal against his conviction by a Federal High Court and until that appeal is dispensed with, even commonsense dictates that the Senate or the Independent National Electoral Commission  cannot do otherwise.”

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