Kogi Guber Tribunal Relocates to Abuja after Losing  Petitions to Gunmen

President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Monica Dongban-Mensem, has directed the immediate relocation of the sittings of the Kogi State Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal from Lokoja, the state capital to Abuja for security concerns. The sittings will now be held at the National Judicial Institute, Abuja.

This is as the Kogi State Police Command has confirmed receiving complaints about the theft of petitions filed by four aggrieved political parties on the 11 November poll by armed men

The police said the secretary of the Election Petitions Tribunal, David Mike Umar, reported that he was robbed of the documents at gunpoint on Monday. This was made known in a statement by the State Police Public Relation Officer, PORO, SP. William Anya on Wednesday in Lokoja.

The statement reads part: “On Monday 04/12/2023 at about 1820hrs one Mr David Umar Mike ‘m’ Secretary to Kogi State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal along with Labode Apreala (f) Confidential Secretary and Hassimu Adamu Assistant Secretary, came to State Criminal Investigation Department, Kogi State Police Headquarters and reported that on the said date three of them left their Hotel rooms in Lokoja about 1300hrs heading to their Office at the High Court Complex driving in his (David’s) Peugeot 406 Car.

“That just before the CBN at about 1320hrs one SUV vehicle which had earlier overtaken him blocked his car with two other SUVS following behind. All of them surrounded and blocked him as he attempted to reverse.

“That he saw about seven hooded men all heavily armed and dressed in black attire who shot severally into the air and dragged him and his two other colleagues out of their car, ransacked the car and made away with all the the documents including Petitions filed by four (4) Parties namely Action Alliance (AA), Action People’s Party (APP), Peoples Redemption Party (PRP) and Social Democratic Party (SDP), two (2) Record Books, a bag containing his personal items.

“He claimed to have also reported to the DSS Office. Hence, a thorough and diligent investigation into the incident has been ordered by the Commissioner of Police, Kogi State Command.”

The police however urged all parties involved in the election to avoid statements that may prejudice their investigation, “The Command also appeals to anyone with useful information on the alleged incident to provide same to the Command. The public will be updated as the investigation progresses.”

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