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Mixed reactions trail nullification of Mark's election in Benue Zone C

Written By Idoma Television on Sunday, November 29, 2015 | 2:30:00 AM

Constituents of Benue Zone C senatorial district have welcomed the nullification of  former Senate President, David Mark's fifth term election by an Appeal Court with mixed  feelings.

The APC candidate in the election, Dan Onjeh had approached the court, seeking for dissolution of Mark's election, on the ground that the contest was marred with irregularities.

Mark's election was yesterday nullified and fresh one ordered within three months by the Appeal Court after the Tribunal had turned down Onjeh's request.
While some indigenes see the development as the beginning of Idoma political misfortunes, other described it as long overdue.

IV observed that shortly after the court's verdict, celebration broke out in Makurdi, the Benue State capital, especially among the Tivs.

Most of them described Mark's misfortune as payback for allegedly giving all the juicy appointments to Idoma people during his days as the Senate President.

Also in Otukpo, our correspondent noted the feelings of residents. after the judgment was delivered.

Some loyalists to the former governor of Niger State faulted the judgment while others were of the opinion that Mark should have honourably backed out before now.

Reacting to the court's verdict, a former Campaign Coordinator to Mark, Comrade Philip Agbese advised the elder ex-soldier to relinquish the PDP ticket in the forthcoming rerun elections to another candidate in the interest of his party and fairness in Idomaland.

He wrote, "We welcome the judgement with every sincerity of purpose and wish to call on the former Senate President to voluntarily resign the PDP ticket to Dr Stephen Onmeje to lead the party to victory when a date is finally given for the elections."

On his part, convener of Idoma Progressives Congress, Andy Obeya said, "I see a lot of odds against Daniel Onjeh in the next 90 days. I am not a prophet but I make bold to say this: His party (the APC) at the state level has failed to provide the basics and as such, the electorates will massively vote his opponent.

"Two, his alleged romance with George Akume and Akume's interest in the zone is another factor that will count against Daniel.

"Three, the School of Health Science project that was removed from the zone and Akume's involvement in the whole process is another factor against Daniel. 

"The fight ahead is for the liberation of a people, but the situation at hand is precarious.

"How Onjeh gets himself out of this puzzle remains a challenge that no one can predict.

"Dicey situation we found ourselves in Benue south. Lessons for veteran and budding politicians, including Daniel Onjeh.

"The beauty of this whole judgement is that Mark will have to spend what he hasn't spent on any elections before. At least the boys have commenced their work before official engagement by Okpokopowulu.

Also reacting, popular political analyst and journalist, Sunday Itodo believes that the Tivs should not celebrate the judgment more than the Idomas.

According to him, "the judgement of the Court of Appeal today in Makurdi did not come as a surprise to me. In this present judicial system in Nigeria, anything is possible; especially since May 2015 and to worsen it, the court sat in Makurdi.

"That‘s why you always see tribunals or Appeal courts giving different judgements on the same issue.

"However, what baffles me today was the rate at which our Tiv brothers and sisters jubilated over the judgement. I have gone through all the group pages in Benue and has also perused through the walls of my Tiv friends and read posts and comments.

"I tell you, they have never been this happy in recent times; happier than the Idoma people.

"And I asked myself: why is it so? Senator Mark is our own; Dan Onjeh is our own; none of them is a Tiv. Why the heck over issues bothering only Idoma?

"If we like we vote Mark back to senate to complete his tenure; if we so wish we ask him to come and rest and allow Onjeh to go.

"This can only be done by Idoma people through their PVCs and not through facebook.

"I'm not sure if any Tiv person will be part of that decision except those residing within zone C. If any Mark or Onjeh is elected, he would be representing us and not them."

For popular comedian and writer, Enenche Enenche, the judgment was a clear triumph of truth over lies.

Adding his voice via a Facebook post, he said: "The victory of falsehood over truth is temporal. Congratulations Comrade Daniel Onjeh. Today you have shown your generation the power of faith, resilience and courage. Nothing built on lies, deceit and falsehood, stand the test of time."
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