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Bayelsa 2023: Court Dismisses Suit Seeking Sylva’s Disqualification

Federal high court in Abuja has dismissed a suit seeking to disqualify Timipre Sylva from contesting the Bayelsa governorship election scheduled for November 11.

Gatekeepers News reports that the presiding judge, Justice Inyang Ekwo held that the suit lacked merit.

A governorship aspirant in Bayelsa, Ogbomade Johnson, in the suit filed on April 27, sued the All Progressives Congress (APC), the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and Sylva, as first to third respondents, respectively.

Johnson asked the court for an order of mandatory injunction compelling INEC to remove the APC and Sylva from the list of political parties and candidates that will participate in the November election.

She also prayed for an order of perpetual injunction restraining Sylva from parading himself as the party’s governorship candidate in Bayelsa.

Johnson further claimed that the APC failed to conduct a valid primary election contrary to the provisions of the Electoral Act and guidelines of the party despite demanding and receiving N10 million from each aspirant.

However, Justice Ekwo in his judgment, had that the APC conducted a valid primary election which was monitored by INEC.

The judge dismissed the police reports tendered by the plaintiff which claimed that no primary election was conducted by the party.

Justice Ekwo held that the purported police reports were “worthless and products of illegality.”

The Judge noted that the police were not mandated by any provisions of law to do what they did in favour of the plaintiff.

He faulted the police reports for not being on letterhead papers to give them a semblance of originality.

Also, the court dismissed the suit for being filed outside the 14-day timeline stipulated by the law.

Justice Ekwo said, “In all, I find the case of the plaintiff to be weak having not been established by preponderance of evidence as required by law.

“In the same vein, the case of the plaintiff, having been demolished by overwhelming exhibits tendered by APC and Timipire Sylva, has no legs to stand upon in the face of the law.

“I make an order, dismissing this case and it is hereby dismissed for lacking in merit.”

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