Tag Archives: Kalu

Orji Kalu: EFCC ready to go back to court

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission(EFCC) says it is waiting on the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court to reassign the N7.1bn fraud case of Orji Uzor Kalu, a former Abia State governor, soi that a fresh trial can commence.

Mr Rotimi Jacobs (SAN) who is the prosecuting counsel to the EFCC that the anti-graft agency had already made an application to the Federal High Court Chief Judge to re-assign the case to a judge who will now handle it.

Recall that Kalu had previously been convicted of a N7.1bn fraud last December and subsequently sentenced to 12 years’ imprisonment.

The ruling which convicted and imprisoned Kalu to a sentence was overruled by the Supreme Court on the grounds that Justice Mohammed Idris was who gave the verdict, lacked jurisdiction to preside over the case as he had been elevated to the Court of Appeal and ceased to a judge of the Federal High Court as of when he delivered the judgment.

The Supreme Court has subsequently asked that the trial, be started all over again before another judge. The trial took 12 years to complete.

Consequently, Kalu, who had been in the prison custody since December last year when Justice Idris delivered the judgment, regained his freedom last week.

“We are going to have a robust relationship in the Senate” – Kalu on Theodor Orji

Chief Orji Kalu, former governor of Abi state and Senator-elect for Abia North and former state governor, said on Thursday that he has forgiven his successor, Sen. Theodore Orji, and prepared to work collectively with him in the Senate.

Kalu made this known in a telephone interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) correspondent in Umuahia, shortly after receiving his Certificate of Return from the Independent National Election Commission in Abuja, The Nation Newspapers reports.

He said: “I have forgiven him (Orji) for the benefit of Abia people and we are going to work as one family in the Senate in the interest of Abia and Nigeria.

“We are going to have a robust relationship in the Senate because the interest of Abia and Abians is uppermost to me.”

NAN reports that Kalu and Orji, who succeeded him in 2007 as Abia governor, had been arch- enemies for almost a decade due to political differences.

Kalu, who won the March 9 National Assembly polls, after two consecutive attempts, said that he would work assiduously to re-write the history of representation in his senatorial district.

“There is a lot of work to do for my constituency and we shall work to support the programmes of the Federal Government to ensure they succeed,” he said.

Kalu, who was a member of the House of Representatives in the aborted Third Republic, promised that the ninth Senate would reverse the unnecessary delay in the passage of the annual budget.

He said that the Senate would ensure that the Appropriation Bills received expeditious considerations, once they were presented by the president.

“The consideration and passage of budget estimates would not exceed three months. Once the president presents the bill in September, by December we would have concluded the consideration.

“By so doing, the budget would be ready by January for the president’s assent,” Kalu said.

He said that during the consideration of the budget, the ministers would be restrained from embarking on overseas trips.

“They must be available during the budget defence. They would not be allowed to travel overseas until the budget is ready,” Kalu said.

He said that his membership of the Senate would be remarkable, saying that he would strive to build harmonious relationship among all the ethnic nationalities in the National Assembly.

Source: The Nation Newspapers

Abia North: “INEC perpetuating Illegality” – Ohuabunwa

Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Abia North, Senatorial candidate, Sen. Mao Ohuabunwa, yesterday kicked against the declaration of the former governor of Abia State, Orji Uzor Kalu as Senator-elect for the Senatorial district in last Saturday National Assembly election by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

Announcing Kalu winner of Abia North Senatorial contest is a joke taken too far, a Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) spokesperson in Abia State said.

Recall that the elections held in the same senatorial district was declared inconclusive in 2015 with the same contestants in a tight race.

The spokesperson writes

The following results were announced by INEC for the 5 LGAs that make up Abia North Senatorial district in Abia State:

#SENATE RESULT

UMUNNEOCHI LGA
APC = 5,496
PDP = 5,613
APGA = 2, 609

OHAFIA LGA
APC = 5,523
PDP = 4,861
APGA = 4,247

ISUIKWUATO LGA
APC = 8,317
PDP = 4,609
APGA= 1,792

BENDE LGA
APC = 10,701
PDP = 4 875
APGA = 2,232

AROCHUKWU LGA
APC = 1,166
PDP = 843
APGA = 528

GRAND TOTAL 
APC = 31,201
PDP = 20,801
APGA = 11,410
Others = 1,110

Note the following

1. Bende LGA result did not emanate from the polling units as no results were declared at that level. All results in Bende should have been canceled but the Returning Officer was forced at gunpoint to declare the result for House of Representatives even when he noted 7,601 canceled votes which was more than the margin of 3,547 and he fled afterwards to Umuahia where he issued a statement calling for the cancellation of what he declared.

2. Nkporo in Ohafia LGA recorded 21,360 canceled votes in 32 units of two Wards; precisely Ndi Elu – 15 and Ndi Agbo – 17.

3. Arochukwu (Senator Mao’s home LGA) recorded 31,284 canceled votes with 72 of 149 Polling Units canceled.

4. Elections were canceled at polling units inside Abia State University, Uturu in Isuikwuato LGA with about 19,563 registered voters disenfranchised. That was more than the margin of victory of 3,708 votes recorded for the LGA.

5. Ohafia town recorded 4,682 canceled votes.

A. Total number of canceled votes is 76,889
B. Announced margin of victory 10,402.
Difference between margin of victory and canceled votes is 66,487

Can INEC validly declare a winner of that poll?

The INEC returning officer for Abia North election, Dr Charles Anumudu, is a brother to Willie Anumudu of Globe motors, who is a long term associate of Orji Uzor Kalu and through whom he procured most of the vehicles he bought as Governor of Abia State between 1999 and 2007.