The Akwa Ibom governorship candidate for the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the last election is set to testify before the election petition tribunal when it resumes sitting on Tuesday.
Umana, who gave this indication at the weekend, noted that the prosecution will also be presenting its key witnesses this week. He said among those expected to give evidence is the forensic team that inspected elections materials used for the polls.
Umana is before the tribunal challenging the declaration of the PDP candidate, Emmanuel Udom, as winner of the April polls and governor of the state. He said this week, his legal team will also be moving a motion for extension time to present additional witnesses.
The APC guber candidate, in a statement, expressed his readiness to testify. He maintained that elections did not hold in the state. “Even in my own polling unit, there was no election. So, I and my supporters were denied the opportunity of casting our votes. The same thing happened in other parts of the state. The election materials were carted away even before the process commenced,” he said.
He said the party would also tender the INEC register used at all polling units in the state as well as the Card Reader “to prove that elections did not hold in the state”.
He lamented that efforts were made to destroy evidences that was going to help his case. “Someone directed that the booklets of ballot papers used during the sham election be unbounded and detached into single ballot papers to show that they were actually used for voting, which was not the case.
“In fact, the exercise commenced with the detachment of booklets used for Etim Ekpo Local Government Area (LGA) of the state before information leaked. And when that happened, supporters of the APC mobilized to the INEC office where they sighted people running out of the premises upon their arrival. Before a team of policemen and DSS operatives arrived the premises the culprits had escaped, reportedly on a tip off by compromised police officers assigned to the premises,” he explained.
“Our forensic team was also frustrated during the inspection exercise, as most of the election materials were destroyed. Some people went as far as pouring water on the materials,” he said.
He however added: “No matter what they do, we have adequate evidence to prove that no election held. Our people were on ground, so everything that transpired was recorded. I am optimistic that with what we have, we will win at the tribunal”.
Umana maintained that he has respect for the rule of law and is ready to pursue his case to a logical conclusion using the right means.
After the APC concludes its case this week, the PDP and INEC will then open its defence.