Justice Okon Abang of a Federal High Court in Abuja has ordered the Governor of Abia State, Okezie Ikpeazu, to vacate his office immediately, after finding him guilty of submitting false information to his party, the PDP during the party’s governorship primary in December 2014.
Ikpeazu’s rival at the primary, Uche Ogah, had petitioned the court and provided evidence to show that Ikpeazu had indeed provided false information about himself to their party. After listening to the counsels of both politicians, the presiding judge ordered INEC to immediately issue a certificate of return to Ogah.
Following the court ruling ordering the Governor of Abia State, Dr Okezie Ikpeazu to vacate his office, the governor has insisted that he remains the governor of the state.
Gov. Ikpeazu in a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Enyinnaya Apollos said he will appeal the ruling as he has instructed his lawyers to file an appeal immediately against the said judgment.
According to the statement, from the period the embattled governor was an appointee of the government to when he was appointed the governor of the state, his taxes were deducted at source.
“Ikpeazu as an appointee of the Abia State Government from 2011 to 2014 when he served as the General Manager, Abia State Passengers Integrated Manifest and Safety Scheme, ASPIMSS, and first Deputy General Manager, Abia State Environmental Protection Agency, ASEPA, Aba and Environs respectively, before his resignation in October 2014 to contest the Governorship election in the state, that within the period his taxes were deducted at source.
“When he had need of his tax clearance in 2014, he applied to the Abia State Board of Internal Revenue, and was duly issued with his tax receipts for the period in question,” the statement said.
Ikpeazu urged the people of the state to remain law abiding until the final determination of the matter by the appellate courts.