Supreme Court Withholds Ruling On Rivers APC Primaries Till Further Notice

Supreme Court Fixes Date To Rule On Saraki’sAssets Declaration Case

The Supreme Court has reserved ruling on the competence of appeal filed by Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Ameachi’s faction of Rivers State chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC).

A five-man panel led by Justice Mohammed Dattijo, fixed ruling on a date to be communicated to the parties after listening to counsel’s submissions in the matter.

RIVERS: Court Ruled Tht APC Shld Nt Hold Primaries, They Went Ahead Disobeying Court. NOW THEY EXPECT COURT 2 RECOGNISE SUCH?

— Imade Ize-Iyamu (@ImadeIzeIyamu) January 21, 2019

Naija News recalls the Supreme Court had in December last year adjourned till March 8, 2019, to determine the legality or otherwise of primary elections the APC conducted in Rivers State to nominate its candidates for the 2019 polls.

Marked SC/1070/2018, the appeal was lodged before the court by 22 chieftains of the party led by one Abdullahi Umar.

The appellants, through their counsel, Henry Bello, urged the apex court to re-affirm its ruling of October 22, 2018, and nullify the outcome of the primary elections that produced Tonye Cole and other candidates of the Amaechi’s faction.

They also urged the court to dismiss a pending appeal marked CA/PH/198/2015, which it lodged before the Port Harcourt division of the Court of Appeal.However, the Apex Court reconvened yesterday, about two months earlier than the originally scheduled date to deliver judgment in the suit.

Yesterday’s sitting was sequel to the appellants’ application requesting the Court to facilitate the judgment in line with provisions of the fourth Alteration of the Electoral Act, which stipulates 60 days for the matter.Bello argued that although the court ought to deliver its judgment before January 1, 2019, it could not do so because the matter has become status barred.He, therefore, prayed the court leave to address it orally on the need for the apex court to deliver a judgment striking out the appeal on grounds that the appellants’ motion of December 17, 2018, has been overtaken by expiration of time.

I suspect they have compromised the judges at the Apex court,just last week @GovWike secured a very suspicious judgement barring APC from fielding any candidate in 2019 in Rivers,how can @OfficialPDPNig and Wike be challenging the primaries of APC they were not part of? https://t.co/kogrOk0qZY

— Abdul (@ishakaa) January 13, 2019

However, Justice Datijjo noted that outside the appellants’ motion, there was also need for counsel to address Court on the competence of the appeal, adding that the Supreme Court will not be competent to sit on a case that arises from an incompetent appeal at the Court of Appeal.

Counsel to the respondents, Lateef Fagbemi (SAN), however, drew the court’s attention to the fact that there are two different appeals; one being the interlocutory injunction and the other filed after the judgment in the substantive suit.

After taking the submissions from counsel in the matter, Justice Datijjo announced that ruling on the competence of appeal has been reserved until a date to be communicated to both parties.

Now APC has a problem and @inecnigeria is claiming they will postpone Rivers elections to give APC opportunity to prepare. I am warning @inecnigeria not to try that rubbish in Rivers State .#EtcheLGAcampaign pic.twitter.com/hZA3GGodJe

— Gov N E Wike Information. (@GovWike) January 19, 2019

He, therefore, prayed the court leave to address it orally on the need for the apex court to deliver a judgment striking out the appeal on grounds that the appellants’ motion of December 17, 2018, has been overtaken by expiration of time.

However, Justice Datijjo noted that outside the appellants’ motion, there was also need for counsel to address Court on the competence of the appeal, adding that the Supreme Court will not be competent to sit on a case that arises from an incompetent appeal at the Court of Appeal.

Naija News earlier reported that in obedience to court orders, the APC in Rivers state has not been listed as part of parties to contest the 2019 general elections in the country.

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