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Thursday, 14 November 2019

APC Has No Candidate In Bayelsa Governorship Election - Court Rules

The All Progressives Congress has been disqualified from participating in the Bayelsa State governorship election on Saturday.

The Federal High Court sitting in Yenagoa ruled in a judgment on Thursday that the APC does not have a candidate for the election.

Delivering judgment, Justice Jane Inyang, held that the primaries were conducted arbitrarily outside the rules of the party.

The suit filed by Senator Heineken Lokpobiri challenged the conduct of the governorship primaries of APC which held on September 4.

She held that since the process was conducted in violation of the party’s constitution and guidelines as clearly spelt out for the conduct of governorship primaries, none of the aspirants should be fielded as the party’s candidate.

She, therefore, restrained the Independent Electoral Commission from including Lyon as the APC candidate in the governorship election slated for Saturday.

Inyang noted that according to the APC guidelines for the conduct of the 2019 governorship primaries, the results were expected to be declared by the returning officer for the pre-election, Governor Mai Kala Buni of Yobe State and not Senator Emmanuel Ochega, Secretary of the election Committee.

Inyang also held that the APC violated its own rules in the composition of the election panel when it constituted a one-member committee and not seven members as stipulated in the party rules.

“It has been established by judicial authorities and several judgments that political parties are bound by their own rules, the committee that conducted the primary threw caution to the winds and it is my ruling that the primaries stand nullified.

“The results announced by Senator Emmanuel Ochega is not valid as he is not the returning officer for the election.

“And I make an order restraining INEC from recognising any of the aspirants that participated in the said primaries,” Inyang said.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that Lokpobiri had approached the court, to challenge the emergence of Mr David Lyon as the APC governorship candidate in the state.

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