Tribunal dismisses request to move election materials from Rivers to Abuja

Posted by News Express | 20 August 2015 | 3,637 times

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The Rivers State Election Petition Tribunal, sitting in Abuja, has dismissed the application by the All Progressives Congress Governorship Candidate, Mr. Dakuku Peterside and his party to compel the Independent National Electoral Commission to move the election materials used for the April 11 2015 governorship election to Abuja for inspection.

In its hearing on Wednesday, the tribunal headed by Justice Muazu Pindiga dismissed the application on the grounds that it lacked merit and could not take precedence over a subsisting order given by the Tribunal in June on the same issue.

The Tribunal had earlier given an order, directing the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to allow the petitioner access to the election materials comprising; ballot papers and result sheets, an order Justice Pindiga said still stands

So far, the ruling given by the three-member Election Petition Tribunal on the April 11, 2015 governorship elections in Rivers State is five-fold.

The tribunal first struck out the request by the Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, asking for a stay of ‎execution on the Tribunal’s order of June 11 which permitted the petitioner to inspect the election materials in Port Harcourt, the capital of Rivers State.

Justice Pindiga said the application was struck out because of the failure of the lawyer to the applicant, Emmanuel Ukala, to move the motion at the last proceedings despite being asked by the tribunal to do so, thereby deeming the motion abandoned.

The tribunal also rejected the motion by INEC, challenging the competence of the petition. It said that the motion would be heard along with the main petition.

Also dismissed by the Tribunal for lack of merit was a motion by the petitioner, Mr. Dakuku Peterside, asking that election materials used in Rivers State be moved from Port Harcourt to INEC head office in Abuja for easy inspection on grounds that INEC officials in Rivers State refused to cooperate with the petitioner in the execution of the June 11 order.

But counsel to the petitioner, Emeka Ngige, said they would deploy alternative measures to make INEC comply with the rules of evidence.

The tribunal has adjourned to August 25 when all other motions by parties would be addressed along with the main petition. (Channels TV)

•Photo shows Wike.

Source: News Express

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