June 24, 2024

Alleged certificate forgery: Court adjourns Okon, Eno case till 12 September

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Udeme Utip

The ongoing trial at The Federal High Court, Uyo, between Mr Akan Okon and the candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), in Akwa Ibom State, Mr Umo Eno, has been further delayed as the lead counsel to the accused, Paul Usoro (SAN), seeks leave of absence to attend to his health issues.

Usoro had asked for one month’s adjournment, adding that the period would be adequate for him to attend to his health.

The judge, however, rejected the plea for one month and instead granted him two weeks and adjourned the proceedings till the 12th of September.

It would be recalled that Okon, one of the governorship aspirants of the PDP, had dragged the winner of the party primary of 25 May 2022, Pastor Umo Eno, as well as the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, to court, over alleged forgery of West African Examination Certificate and other documents.

In suit no FHC/UY/CS/110/2022, Okon accused Pastor Eno of forging his WAEC certificate and age declaration and prayed the court to hand over the party ticket to him as the next highest scorer of votes in the exercise.

However, when the matter came up for hearing on Monday, August 29th, Okon sought the leave of the court to amend his originating processes in the suit, including his write of summons, statement of claims, written statement on oath, list of documents and list of witnesses.

Mr Okon had also brought a new lawyer, Okey Amaechi (SAN), to lead in the case ahead of Uche Awa (SAN), who had been in the saddle before now.

Counsel to the Plaintiff, Okey Amaechi (SAN), who filed the motion, also pleaded with the court to grant him leave to amend his earlier reply to the 1st and 2nd Defendants’ Statement of Defence and all accompanying processes. Reacting, counsel to the 1st and 2nd Respondents, Paul Usoro, SAN reasoned that having just been served with the fresh amended processes, he would study them before responding.

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