Respite may come for embattled Senator elect from Akwa-Ibom North Senatorial district, Honourable Bassey Etim as Senate Leadership pledged to abide by the rule of law in resolving the impasse.
Already, the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami had advised Senate President, Bukola Saraki to swear in Etim as a senator since he has been given a certificate of return by the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC.
Senate leader, Senator Lawan in fresh reaction on Tuesday assured that Senate will abide the rule of law.
He however declined further comment on the development saying it will be prejudiced to comment on the issue at that is presently at the court of law.
Lawan said,” I don’t want to comment much on this matter because it is already subicy. It is a matter that is in court.
“I am not supposed to say we are going to take this action or that. This is still as far as I know you by our rules I am not supposed to go into details.
“Let me say also that the Senate is an institution that respect rule of law and we will do everything and anything possible at any time to ensure that we comply with our laws and I believe that as a matter of time when we come to the end of this situation.
“That is the much I can say about that.”
Senate President had in last week said he was still consulting the National Assembly legal department on the Akwa-Ibom North Senatorial district tussle.
It could be recalled that the Federal High Court sitting in Uyo, the Akwa Ibom State capital, had nullified the election of Senator Bassey Albert Akpan in the 2015 senatorial election for Uyo senatorial district (Akwa Ibom North-east) over alleged electoral fraud.
In the judgment, which lasted for about two hours, the judge held that “Akpan was a candidate for the governorship election but was only smuggled into the Akwa Ibom North-East senatorial district at the last minute.”
Justice Fatun, accordingly ordered INEC to issue a fresh certificate of return to Bassey Etim as the duly elected candidate for the Akwa Ibom North-East senatorial district while the certificate earlier wrongfully issued to Akpan be forfeited.
Also, the judge directed that the leadership of the National Assembly should swear in Etim as the senator for the senatorial district as well as awarded N200.000 as fine in favour of the plaintiff against the defendants.
The judge further ordered for the refund of all monies illegally accrued to Akpan to the federal government.
INEC had also responded accordingly to the Judgement of the Federal High Court on the case but Senate is yet to comply with the judgement.