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APC doubts fairness of Rivers poll tribunal

21 July 2015, 08:54Okoro Chinedu

Lagos - The All Progressives Congress (APC) in Rivers State has alleged a conspiracy between the Independent Electoral Commission
(INEC) and some judges to frustrate the party’s petitions challenging the outcome of the March 28 and April 11 general elections.

APC is challenging the conduct of the poll that steered People’s Democratic Party candidate, Nyesom Wike to power as governor, among other outcomes.

Amid the frustration, APC expressed disappointment after National Assembly Election Petition Tribunal dismissed petitions filed by its candidates, Dr Dawari George and Lucky Odili of Asari-Toru/Akuku-Toru Federal Constituency and Ogba/Egbema/Ndoni Federal Constituency respectively.

Both men had filed petitions challenging the victory of Boma Goodhead of Asari-Toru/Akuku-Toru Federal Constituency and Prince Nnam Obi of Ogba/Egbema/Ndoni Federal Constituency.

The Tribunal dismissed the petitions on the grounds that APC’s revised notice for the conduct of the party’s primaries for the said elections was not within the stipulated 21 days.

Rivers APC Chairman, Dr Davies Ibiamu Ikanya, expressed disappointment at the ruling.

Also Read: Rivers APC alleges INEC conspiring against them in election petition

He said while the party was still grappling with the seeming partiality of Justice Lambo Akanbi of the Federal High Court in Port Harcourt which deliberately denied the 22 elected Local Government Chairmen the right to fair hearing in a matter brought before it by the PDP against the Rivers State Independent Electoral Commission (RSIEC).

“Another panel of judges presiding over the National Assembly election petition tribunals moved again to create its own laws outside the Electoral Act 2011, denying Dr. Dawari George and Mr. Lucky Odili the right to fair hearing in their petitions against INEC and PDP,” Ikanya said.

He said the panel had after several applications filed by PDP to frustrate the suit at the early stage, decided to strike out the suits on grounds of technicalities.

Ikanya noted that while APC had filed an appeal against the strange tribunal ruling, PDP was “agog on the delusion” that all APC candidates, including APC gubernatorial candidate, Dr Dakuku Peterside, would lose out in their subsequent petitions.

“This cannot be an escape route for Caretaker Governor Nyesom Wike and his followers. This is the era when sanity shall overrule impunity at all cost. The die is now cast!” 

- CAJ News


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