Court Sets June 22 To Decide Mode Of Edo APC Primaries

 

The Federal High Court in Benin City has fixed June 22 to decide on the mode of primary for the All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship primaries in Edo State.

This followed the resumed hearing of the suit on Friday asking it to determine the mode of the primary election for the APC ahead of the September 19 governorship election in the state.

The suit was filed by two APC members, Mr Kenneth Asekomhe and Matthew Iduoyirikemwen, seeking to stop the party from going ahead with the direct primary method for the Edo governorship election.

This development comes 24 hours after the Court of Appeal also in Benin ruled that there is merit in the appeal of the party seeking the determination of the mode of its primary.

READ ALSO: PDP’s Energy Is What I Need To Move Edo Forward, Says Obaseki

The appellate court set aside the ruling of the lower court which had restrained the parties from taking any steps on the mode of the primary election to be adopted and asked the parties to return to the Federal High Court to deal with the matter.

Upon commencement of the day’s proceedings, the counsel to the claimants sought to adopt all its processes.

However, the counsel to the first defendant, the APC and second defendant, Adams Oshiomhole, asked the court to adjourn to enable the judge to study yesterday’s order of the court of appeal on Edo Primary Election.

They submitted that the judge would be properly guided by printed copies of the Court of Appeal’s judgement as opposed to depending on the remarks of counsel on what transpired at the upper court.

But the counsel to the claimants opposed this application maintaining that the Court of Appeal remitted the hearing of the applications and originating summons to the Federal High Court.

Rivers APC Primary: Supreme Court To Hear Abe’s Appeal On March 26

No APC Ward Congress In Rivers, Says Magnus Abe
Magnus Abe (file photo)

 

The Supreme Court will on March 26, begin hearing in the appeal seeking the determination of the authenticity of the direct primary conducted by the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Rivers State for the nomination of its candidates for the 2019 general election.

APC factional governorship candidate in the state, Senator Magnus Abe is asking the apex court to make a final pronouncement on the legality of both direct and indirect primary polls conducted by the party’s two factions last year.

When the matter was mentioned, Senator Abe’s counsel, Mr. Henry Bello, moved a motion praying the court to amongst others grant an accelerated hearing in the matter, an abridgment of time for parties to file their processes and a definite date for the hearing of the appeal.

He predicted the motion on 8 grounds and an affidavit of urgency because the matter is a pre-election appeal and must be determined within 60 days by law.

READ ALSO: Withholding My Certificate Of Return Has The Capacity To Cause Tension – Okorocha

However, counsels to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and Mr. Tony Cole who are respondents in the matter did not object to the appeal.

They both noted that 24 hours is not enough for them to file their briefs of arguments.

But in a short ruling, Justice Mary Odili who presided over the five-man panel granted the 3 prayers of the appellant and adjourned hearing in the matter till March 26.

Justice Odili also ordered Mr Cole and other respondents to file their brief of argument within 3 days, while the appellant was granted the same time frame within which to file his own response.

Appeal Court Sets Aside INEC’s Decision On Zamfara APC

 

The Court of Appeal in Abuja has set aside a judgment of the Federal High Court, barring the All Progressives Congress from fielding candidates for the general elections in Zamfara State.

The Federal High Court’s judgment had followed the decision of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to bar the APC in the state from fielding candidates.

In the judgment delivered on January 25, 2019, Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu of the Federal High Court, had held that INEC was right to have delisted names of candidates APC presented for the elections.

According to Ojukwu, the APC had failed to conduct a valid primary within the period scheduled by the electoral body.

Read Also: General Elections: INEC Insists APC Cannot Field Candidates In Zamfara, Rivers

But a 3-man panel of the appellate court, led by Justice Abdul Aboki, held that the trial court lacked the jurisdiction to have entertained the suit and that it is an abuse of court process.

Justice Aboki stressed that the suit at the Federal High Court was filed out of time.

According to him, the Electoral Act provides 14 days to institute a suit after the cause of action had arisen, but in this case, the suit was filed 15 days after.

He, therefore, rendered the action incompetent.

The judgment of the Appeal Court comes just hours after the INEC Chairman, Professor Mahmood Yakubu, again stressed that the APC in both Zamfara and Rivers States will not field candidates in the forthcoming general elections.

“The position of the Commission remains the position we announced before now, that the parties in question by court order and/by our understanding of the interpretation of the judgments of two courts of co-ordinate jurisdictions delivered same day in the case of Zamfara cannot field candidates in the 2019 general elections for the National Assembly, Governorship and State Assembly elections,” Mr Mahmood said.