…Alleges impersonation, writes Police, DSS
By Chibuike Nwabuko
Action Alliance (AA) candidate for Bende federal constituency, Abia State in the February 2023 general elections, Ifeanyi Igbokwe has distanced himself from the ill-fated struggle to upturn the peoples mandate for the deputy speaker, Rt. Hon. Benjamin Okezie Kalu at the National Assembly Elections Petition Tribunal sitting at Umuahia, the State capital.
Appearing on a Radio programme in Umuahia after filing a withdrawal motion on notice before the tribunal, Igbokwe expressed shock that someone used his name to file a suit against Kalu.
He announced that he was impersonated by someone yet to be identified at the tribunal, insisting he never filed or authoritized any legal action against the deputy speaker.
Igbokwe said he has written to the Police and the Department of State Service (DSS) to fish out the impersonators including the lawyers who represent them because according to him, whoever hired the lawyers also hired the impersonators.
By implication, the development has put the candidate of the Labour Party in the election, Frank Chinasa in a quagmire, making him a solitary wanderer in the struggle because he did not contest Kalu’s electoral victory.
Chinasa in his case only contested the legality of the process of Kalu’s name change, a matter that had been previously decided in favour of the deputy speaker in 2020 by Hon. Justice A. O Chijioke of an Abia State High Court, Umuahia when it was first presented by one Okey Ezeala.
The decision of the court still subsists as it was never appealed.
Speaking on radio, Igbokwe said “I was at home drinking my tea and watching the news until someone called me to inform me that I had a case in court against the Deputy Speaker, Rt. Hon Benjamin Kalu. So, I was surprised that people were calling me from my own place and constituency telling me about the court case. I accepted the results from the elections, accepted defeat, an said to God be the glory.
“Now, I am shocked that someone is even representing me. This is my poster and this is my voter’s card, this is my party card so how come somebody is representing me and I didn’t know anything about it?
“Even my lawyer is surprised also. When we heard it, we were like ah! ah! see Rt. Hon Ben that we are all rejoicing for his new position and I am telling people that he is my brother from Bende. So why will I start fighting my own brother?
“We have gone to court, sworn every affidavit and we are writing to DSS and the IG of Police because I want to know the person impersonating me. I want to clear my name first. I want to tell the people of Abia state and Bende that I accept defeat and I want to tell Deputy Speaker that I am not fighting him. I don’t know the person impersonating me but I will fish him out and come back to inform you people”, he said.