Bayelsa election: Appeal Court dismisses suit filed by UPC

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By Wandoo Sombo
Abuja, Sept. 24, 2020 The Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja has dismissed the appeal filed by the United Peoples Congress (UPC) and its governorship candidate, Mr Stephen Ibiene against the election of Gov. Duoye Diri of Bayelsa.

The appeal which was dismissed on Thursday was in connection to the judgment delivered by the Bayelsa Governorship Election Petition Tribunal.

The court in unanimous decision dismissed the appeal for want of diligent prosecution, the appellants having abandoned the appeal.

The Tribunal had on Aug. 17, dismissed the petition of the UCP and its governorship candidate for failing to prove allegations made against the deputy governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Sen. Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo.

The party then approached the appellate court asking the court to set aside the decision of the tribunal.

When the matter was called, there was no representation for the party which is the appellant.

However, Mr Chris Uche (SAN), Mr Yunus Ustaz (SAN) and Mr Emmanuel Idem announced appearance for Diri, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the Peoples Democratic Party.

In a short ruling, the five -man panel of Justices presided over by Justice Adzira Mshella, dismissed the appeal.

Earlier, the panel had reserved judgment in Diri’s appeal against the majority judgment of the tribunal which ordered his sack.

The tribunal in a two-to-one judgment on Aug. 17 held that the Advanced Nigerian Democratic Party (ANDP) and its governorship candidate, Lucky King-George, were unlawfully excluded by INEC in the Nov. 16 governorship poll in Bayelsa.

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