Bayelsa: Tight Security as Supreme Court Hears APC’s Motion for Judgment Review

  • Lyon drags eminent lawyer, Afe Babalola, back to practice

Alex Enumah in Abuja

There is tight security as the Supreme Court commences hearing in the appeal by the All Progressive Congress, its Governorship and Deputy Governorship candidates, seeking a review of the judgment of the apex court that sacked them as governor-elect and deputy governor-elect of Bayelsa.

Leading a team of lawyers for the governorship candidate, Mr David Lyon, and his deputy, Biobarakuma Degi-Eremienyo, is Nigeria’s foremost senior lawyer, Chief Afe Babalola SAN.

Also in court is the Governor of Bayelsa State, Senator Duoye Diri, National Chairman of the APC, comrade Adams Oshiomhole.

The apex court had on February 13 barely 24 hours to the inuaguration of Lyon and his deputy as Governor and Deputy of Bayelsa State, ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to withdraw the certificate of return issued to them as winner of the November 16 governorship election in Bayelsa State.

The action of the apex court was predicated on the grounds that the APC deputy governor-elect was not qualified to have participated in the polls on account of supplying false information to INEC to aid his qualification for the election.

The apex court subsequently ordered that the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, who came second in the election, be sworn in as duly elected Governor and Deputy of Bayelsa State.

However not satisfied with the decision of the apex court, the APC, Lyon and Degi-Eremienyo, applied to the court for a review and setting aside of its judgment that disqualified them from the November 16 polls

The applicants specifically want the Supreme Court to set aside the “wrong” interpretation given to its judgment of February 13, 2020 and the subsequent execution by INEC.

Among others, APC is contending that the Supreme Court, in its judgment, misinterpreted the November 12, 2019 judgment of the Federal High Court, Abuja which it affirmed.

The party argued that the Supreme Court acted without jurisdiction and denied it fair hearing when it proceeded to disqualify its governorship candidate even though the Federal High Court, in the judgment by Justice Inyang Ekwo, which the apex court affirmed, refused the prayer to disqualify Lyon.

APC also faulted the interpretation given to the Supreme Court judgment by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in deciding to issue certificate of return to the candidates of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

Details later…