A Pan-Okpe sociopolitical group, the Okpe Peoples’ Forum, OPF has commended the Court of Appeal for restoring the Speaker of Delta State House of Assembly, Rt Hon. Sheriff Oborevwori as the governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for the state in the 2023 general elections.
The group also extended its appreciation to all Deltans for their prayers and for remaining peaceful while the avoidable ordeal lasted.
A statement released in Sapele, Delta state by OPF President, Igho Akeregha and Austin Azu, Public Relations Officer expressed gratitude to the Delta state governor, Dr Ifeanyi Okowa for his steadfastness and exemplary leadership that ensured the victory of Oborevwori who is currently the Speaker of the Delta State House of Assembly.
OPF opined that the triumph of Oborevwori at the Appeal court has the blessing of the revered Okpe Monarch, the Orodje of Okpe, His Royal Majesty, Orhue 1 who mobilised all Okpe Sons and Daughters in prayers for Oborevwori.
The Forum, a global body of notable Okpe indigenes assured it would continue to work for the peace and development of Delta state in general and Okpe Kingdom in particular being one of the most peaceful ethnic groups in Nigeria.
The appellate court had voided and set aside the judgement of Justice Taiwo Taiwo of the Federal High Court which on July 7 nullified Oborevwori’s nomination on grounds of alleged certificate forgery and perjury.
But Justice Peter Ige, who led two other Justices of the appellate court in Abuja that delivered the landmark judgment, held that claims against the Speaker are criminal in nature and must be proved beyond a reasonable doubt.
He also held that David Edevbie, who instituted the Federal High Court suit, ought to have approached the court through a Writ of Summons to enable the resolution of disputes and not by originating summons where only affidavit evidence is required.
The learned Judge further held that issue of certificate forgery and faking of documents allegations against the Speaker are such that required witnesses from those who issued the certificates and the alleged fake documents.
Justice Ige, therefore, affirmed the victory of the Speaker in the May 25 primary election where he polled 590 votes to defeat Edevbie who scored only 113 votes to come second.
Following the judgement, the OPF appealed to all Deltans to turn out in large numbers next year to vote for Oborevwori as the next governor of Delta state.