Federal High Court Clears APC’s Timipre Sylva for Bayelsa Governorship Race

Court Clears Timipre Sylva for Bayelsa Governorship Election

In a recent development, a Federal High Court in Abuja has delivered a judgment dismissing a suit aimed at disqualifying the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate, Timipre Sylva, from participating in the forthcoming Bayelsa governorship election, scheduled for November 11.

Lack of Merit in the Suit

Justice Inyang Ekwo, presiding over the case, declared that the suit lacked merit, thus preserving Timipre Sylva’s candidacy for the election.

The legal action, initiated on April 27 by Ogbomade Johnson, a governorship aspirant in Bayelsa, had named the APC, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), and Timipre Sylva as the first to third respondents, respectively.

Aspirant’s Claims and Demands

Ogbomade Johnson’s suit sought a mandatory injunction compelling INEC to exclude the APC and Timipre Sylva from the list of political parties and candidates eligible to participate in the November election.

Additionally, the aspirant requested a perpetual injunction restraining Timipre Sylva from representing himself as the APC’s gubernatorial candidate in Bayelsa.

The basis for these demands was Johnson’s assertion that the APC had failed to conduct a valid primary election, despite receiving a substantial sum of N10 million from each aspirant.

Court’s Findings and Dismissals

However, Justice Ekwo’s judgment countered these claims, as he determined that the APC had indeed conducted a valid primary election, a process that had been monitored by INEC.

The judge discredited the police reports presented by the plaintiff, which alleged the absence of a primary election within the party.

According to Justice Ekwo, these police reports were without value and were a result of illegitimate actions, as the police had no legal obligation to undertake such actions on behalf of the plaintiff.

Additionally, the judge noted that the police reports lacked authenticity, as they were not presented on letterhead papers, which would have given them a semblance of originality.

Suit Dismissed on Procedural Grounds

In a final blow to the suit, Justice Ekwo declared it as having been filed outside the 14-day timeline stipulated by the law.

This procedural oversight further contributed to the dismissal of the suit, ultimately securing Timipre Sylva’s candidacy for the Bayelsa governorship election.