David Lyon vs Diri: APC returns to Supreme Court, makes demands

February 21, 2020
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The All Progressives Congress (APC) on Thursday approached the Supreme Court seeking review of its earlier judgement that sacked David Lyon as the Bayelsa governor-elect a day to his swearing-in

The party wants the apex court to reverse its judgment in an application filed by its team of lawyers led by Chief Wole Olanipekun (SAN), with Prince Lateef Fagbemi (SAN).

The APC is contending, among other things that the Supreme Court in its ruling, misinterpreted the November 12, 2019 judgment of the Federal High Court, Abuja which it (the apex court) upheld.

The party said that the Supreme Court acted without jurisdiction and denied it a fair hearing when it proceeded to disqualify David Lyon even though the Federal High Court, in the judgment by Justice Inyang Ekwo, which the apex court affirmed, did not grant the plaintiffs’ prayer to disqualify Lyon.

The APC also faulted the interpretation given to the apex court judgment by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in deciding to issue certificate of return to Douye Diri, candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

According to the APC, “after reinstating the judgment of the trial court in the judgment of this honouroble court of the 13th February, 2020, in SC.1/2020 Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) & 2 Ors. v. Biobarakuma Degi-Eremienyo & 3 ors., this honourable court proceeded to disqualify the governorship candidate of the applicant (Lyon David Pereworimin) despite the fact that the trial High Court refused to grant the reliefs for his disqualification and there was no appeal against same.

“In this honourable court’s judgment of 13th February, 2020, the court erroneously and inadvertently stated that the trial High Court consequentially disqualified the applicant‘s governorship candidate even though the trial court made no such order and when the trial court indeed refused to grant the express orders sought by the plaintiffs therein for his disqualification.”

The party wants the apex Court to set aside portions of its judgment where it held that the Federal High Court, in disqualifying its Deputy Governorship candidate, proceeded to disqualify its governorship candidate.

Also the APC is praying the court to set aside the portion of the judgement where it held that joint ticket of its candidates was vitiated by the disqualification of the deputy governorship candidate and that both candidates are deemed not to be candidates in the election

The party further prayed the court to set aside the portion of the judgment where it ordered the electoral umpire to declare as winner of the governorship election, candidates with the highest number of lawful votes, which falls in favour of the PDP.

The Comrade Adams Oshiomhole-led APC asked the court to set aside the portion of the ruling where it ordered the electoral umpire to withdraw the certificate of return issued to its candidate, David Lyon and the issuance of fresh Certificate of Return to the candidate who had the highest number of lawful votes – Douye Diri of the PDP.

According to the APC, it was wrong for the Supreme Court to have nullified David Lyon’s participation in the election, when, the earlier ruling by the Federal High Court, disqualifying his deputy governorship candidate, stayed as at when the election was conducted.

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