Judge withdraws from Okorocha’s certificate of return suit

Rochas Okorocha

Justice Taiwo Taiwo of the Federal High Court, Abuja on Wednesday, withdrew from the suit filed by Imo State Governor, Rochas Okorocha, in respect of his certificate of return.

Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has refused to issue Okorocha a certificate of return after returning officer for Imo West Senatorial District election said he declared the governor winner under duress.

Okorocha wants the court to compel INEC to release his certificate of return.

But when the matter came up for hearing on Wednesday, the judge announced that he was recusing himself from adjudicating on the matter based on allegations of bias against him.

He announced that the case file would be returned to the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court, Adamu Abdu-Kafarati, for reassignment to another judge.

Candidate of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for the February 23 National Assembly elections, Jones Onyeriri, and that of All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), Osita Izunaso, had asked the judge to disqualify himself from the suit because of utterances he made in court which appeared he might be biased to favour Okorocha even before the matter is heard.