The appeal court of appeal in Abuja has postponed an appeal filed by Okezie Ikepeazu, governor of Abia state, challenging a federal high court judgement that declared him unfit to hold office.
The decision of the court to postpone the appeal of Ikepeazu to August 9 was due to the submission of Friday Iwunzo, the fifth respondent, that he had equal rights to be part of the suit filed by Uche Ogah.
The five-man panel, which did not earlier recognise Iwunzo as part of the suit, said Ikpeazu remains governor till August 4, when Iwunzo’s suit will now be heard.
Ogar, a Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) member, had contended that the governor evaded tax prior to his election, and as such was not qualified to hold an elective office.
It was on this basis that, Okon Abang, the presiding judge, of the high court gave the judgment declaring Ikepeazu unfit to hold office.
In his submission at the appeal court, Alex Iziyon, counsel to Ogar, had said Ikepeazu may not be described as the “legal” occupant of the Abia government house following judgements from other courts on the matter.
Iziyon explained that if he agreed to sign an undertaking recognising Ikepeazu as governor, pending when the court rules on the matter, other meanings maybe read to it.
On his part, Wole Olanipekun, counsel to Ikepeazu, said he also had his own “grievances” in the appeal but he would abide by whatever the court says.
However, both parties signed the undertaking.
The court declared that Ikepeazu remains the governor of Abia state, pending the ruling of the court.