APC will participate in Bayelsa election despite court ruling, INEC confirms

INEC CHAIRMAN, MAHMOOD YAKUBU
INEC CHAIRMAN, MAHMOOD YAKUBU

The All Progressives Congress will participate in tomorrow’s governorship election in Bayelsa State, the electoral body, INEC, has confirmed to PREMIUM TIMES.

“APC will participate in the election in Bayelsa State,” Festus Okoye, INEC’s spokesperson, said Friday morning.

On Thursday, the Federal High Court in Yenagoa ruled the party had no candidate in the election following a disagreement over the party’s primaries.

The APC registered David Lyon, 49, as its governorship candidate, but former minister Heineken Lokpobiri disagreed, insisting he is the party’s authentic candidate who won the primaries.

Mr Lokpobiri asked the court to declare him the candidate of the party.

But the court ruled the primaries took place in contravention of the party’s rules and guidelines and, consequently, produced no candidate for the party in Saturday’s election.

“It is strange,” said Fitzgerald Olorogun, Mr Lokpobiri’s lawyer, saying the court’s verdict was not part of his client’s prayers.

The ruling had raised concerns APC would be out of the election as it failed to participate in Zamfara and Rivers States. In both states, internal crises following disagreements over election primaries and candidacy led to litigations and ultimately denied the party participation in the elections in the two states.

INEC said APC will not suffer the same fate in Bayelsa State.

“Court ruling does not say APC should not participate in the election,” said Mr Okoye. “APC will be on the ballot paper. The court only says the two candidates are not eligible. But we don’t have candidates on the ballot papers. We only have logos of parties and those are what will be there.”

He said all the sensitive materials, including ballot papers, have already been deployed to the state.

“All the sensitive materials are already leaving the Central Bank (in Yenagoa) for the RACs,” he said.

Based on INEC’s decision, if APC wins on Saturday, Bayelsa State would likely be a subject of a legal battle between Mr Lyon and Mr Lokpobiri to determine the authentic flagbearer of the party.

Both politicians are campaigning for their party in the state.

The party is challenging the ruling Peoples Democratic Party, which has controlled the oil-rich state since 1999.


Advertisement

PT Mag Campaign AD

Support PREMIUM TIMES' journalism of integrity and credibility

Good journalism costs a lot of money. Yet only good journalism can ensure the possibility of a good society, an accountable democracy, and a transparent government.

For continued free access to the best investigative journalism in the country we ask you to consider making a modest support to this noble endeavour.

By contributing to PREMIUM TIMES, you are helping to sustain a journalism of relevance and ensuring it remains free and available to all.

Donate


TEXT AD: To advertise here . Call Willie +2347088095401...



BE THE FIRST TO KNOW! Subscribe to our newsletter

* indicates required

DOWNLOAD THE PREMIUM TIMES MOBILE APP

Now available on

  Premium Times Android mobile applicationPremium Times iOS mobile applicationPremium Times blackberry mobile applicationPremium Times windows mobile application

All rights reserved. This material and any other material on this platform may not be reproduced, published, broadcast, written or distributed in full or in part, without written permission from PREMIUM TIMES.