On a day the Supreme Court sacked Senator Abubakar Danladi of the PDP, it also sacked Rep. Herman Hembe (Benue/APC) and ordered him to refund salaries allowances he had collected within 90 days.
The court also ordered that the third term legislator be replaced with Mrs. Dorothy Mato.
The apex court gave the order after it upheld the appeal filed by Mato against the endorsement of Hembe’s election by the Court of Appeal, Makurdi.
In the lead judgment prepared by Justice Walter Onneghen and delivered by Justice Amina Augie, the court held that Mato was the winner of the March 2015 election with respect to Vandeikya/Konshisha Federal Constituency.
“I hereby declare that the plaintiff/appellant was the winner of the primary election of the All Progressives Congress (APC), held from Dec. 7 to Dec. 10, 2014.
“I declare that the plaintiff/appellant was the winner of the general election of March 28, 2015 with respect to Vandeikya/Konshisha Federal Constituency of Benue, as candidate of the APC,” Augie ruled.
The court ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to immediately withdraw the certificate of return issued to Hembe and issue same to Mato.
It further ordered the Speaker or Clerk of the House of Representatives to swear-in Mato as the member representing Vandeikya/Konshisha Federal Constituency of Benue.
Hembe was elected into the House of Representatives in 2007 on the platform of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP).
He was re-elected in 2011 on the platform of the PDP, but defected to the APC in 2015 where he won his bid for a third term.
The woman who will replace him, Dorothy Kpentomun Mato was a member of the state House of Assembly, representing Kyan Constituencey between 2011 and 2015. She was a member of the Action Congress, one of the legacy parties that formed the APC.
She was born on 16 September 1968 and once trained as a fashion designer at Nikky Africana in Lagos.
She had her primary education at R.C.M. Primary School, Chenge, in Vandeikya Local Government and left in 1979.
She then went to Mbagba High School, Mbamngu for her West African Senior School Certificate. She graduated in 2002. This was after her training in fashion design.
In 2006, Dorothy Mato obtained a Diploma in Public Administration at the Benue State Polytechnic, Ugbokolo.
She later went to Fidei Polytechnic, Gboko, to earn a Higher National Diploma Certificate in Business Administration in 2010. While a member of the state Assembly, she also earned a PGD in Business Management at the University of Mkar, Mkar.
She was a former Deputy Chairman, Vandeikya Local Government Council and also supervisory councillor, revenue generation in 2008.
She later became a special assistant on women affairs to former Governor Suswam between 2008 and 2010. She joined the Action Congress in 2011, where she ran for election as a member of the state Assembly. She won her election.
She once declared in a Facebook post in 2016 her idea about what politics should be:” I see politics as an instrument for social & structural change.Although the African perspective is that of a do-or-die procedure,it is pertinent to know that politics is all encompassing,it is about the use of a process for societal upliftment.I strongly encourage general participation in political processes,especially the youths & fellow women,for to alienate ourselves from the process will amount to negating our fundamental constitutional responsibilities.”
Outside of politics, Dorothy is a businesswoman, a community leader and mobiliser.
She is at present President, Tiv Women Traders Association, Gboko branch . She is also the President, De-compatible Sisters, a Women Mobilization, social/Cultural Club (current)
She is reputed for her generous contribution to community development projects at local and state levels.