Relief for Diri as Court Dismisses Alaibe’s Suit Challenging Nomination

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Amby Uneze in Owerri

The Federal High Court, sitting in Owerri, has dismissed a suit by a former governorship aspirant of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the 2019 election in Bayelsa State, Mr. Timi Alaibe, for lacking in merit.

In a two-hour judgment delivered yesterday, Justice T.G. Ringim struck out most of the reliefs sought by Alaibe for failing to prove that the PDP wrongly nominated Governor Douye Diri, as its candidate in the governorship election in the state.

Justice Ringim noted that the plaintiff’s application was not statute-barred because he met the time frame from the primary to the period he challenged the matter.

According to him, “Every primary election matter should be filed not later than 14 days period after the primary.”
The judge, however, stated that the case was an internal affair of the party.
He also ruled that the plaintiff was incompetent to urge PDP to conduct a fresh primary having conducted the party’s primary on September 3, 2019.

Reacting to the judgment, the counsel to Diri, Mr. Chimezie Ihekweazu (SAN), commended the patience of the court to determine the matter despite having been reassigned and for ensuring that the matter was expeditiously disposed of.

He said: “For us as parties, we are satisfied with the decision of the court. We commend the court’s patience and most of all, the courage to do justice to the matter based on the facts and the correct decisions of the law.”

Counsel to the fourth defendant, Mr. Chucks Uburu, also expressed delight at the judgment and urged Alaibe to allow the governor to bring democracy dividends to the people of Bayelsa State.

He said: “This case was filed by Timi Alaibe as plaintiff to torpedo the primary election held by the PDP on 3rd of September, 2019. The case went sine die because it was adjourned indefinitely until last week when we were summoned that the case has been reassigned to Federal High Court, Owerri. For me, the judgment is inspirational, righteous and sagacious.”
Efforts to get the reaction of the counsel to the plaintiff, Mr. Somina Johnbull, were not successful as he left the court premises immediately the judgment was delivered.