The ongoing hearing of the Governorship Elections Petition in Akwa Ibom State recorded a major surprise when Governor Udom Emmanuel through his Counsel Chief Assam Assam, SAN agreed with witness for the Petitioners that elections did not hold on March 9, 2019 in Mkpat Enin Local Government Area.
The Tribunal presided over by Justice AM. Yakubu took evidence of one Christopher Dominic Inang who adopted his written deposition and sought to tender his PVC in evidence. The said PVC incidentally bore the name Sunday Dominic Inang and the photograph of Christopher. Upon tendering the said PVC, it was objected to by Counsel to the Respondents on the grounds that the name on it was different from the name of the witness. The witness explained that the fault was that of the personnel who handled the registration exercise. This explanation was not appealing enough and the PVC was rejected.
Respondents were thereafter called upon to cross examine the witness who’s deposition had been earlier adopted. Chief Assam Assam, SAN representing Governor Udom Emmanuel insisted that he had no questions to ask the witness to contradict his evidence before the Tribunal.
Counsel to the 2nd Respondent Tayo Oyetibo, SAN and that of 3rd Respondent Barr. Nwaforo cross examined the witness accordingly.
Justifying his decision to cross examine the witness, Oyetibo, SAN said “it was the PVC that was rejected and not the witness or his evidence”.
Failure to contradict evidence deposed to in an affidavit amounts to an admission of all the facts contained in the affidavit as true.
Counsel to Governor Udom Emmanuel Chief Assam Assam, SAN has had a tough time cracking through witnesses presented so far by the APC. In one instance out of frustration, he entreated the Tribunal to disallow Dr. Ita Udosen from testifying on grounds which the Tribunal overruled as unfounded.