Frank Ibezim, candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), has been disqualified from the Imo north senatorial bye-election.
This is coming a few hours after an appeal court sitting in Owerri, the state capital, declared Ibezim as the authentic candidate of the APC after a legal battle with Ifeanyi Ararume, an aspirant.
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) will conduct the senatorial bye-election in the state on Saturday, to fill up the seat that became vacant owing to the death of Benjamin Uwajiomogu, who initially won the primary election.
On Friday, a federal high court in Abuja disqualified Ibezim as candidate of the APC in the bye-election for making false declaration in the documents he submitted to INEC.
In his ruling, Inyang Ekwo, the judge, said the affidavit and documents submitted by Ibezim were falsified and uncertified photocopies of West African Examination Council (WAEC) certificate.
The judge held that the documents of the candidate bear two different and irreconcilable names – Ibezim Chukwuma Frank and Ibezim Francis Chukwuma.
Ekwo directed INEC to expunge Ibezim’s name from the list of candidates for the bye-election.
Bye-elections will also be conducted simultaneously in 10 other states across the country.