Due to double registration court has been asked to disqualify Yahaya Bello – BelloNaija
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Due to double registration court has been asked to disqualify Yahaya Bello

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A governorship aspirant in Kogi State, Natasha Akpoti, has filed a suit before the Federal High Court in Abuja praying for the disqualification of Governor Yahaya Bello as a candidate in the forthcoming November 16 governorship election in the state.

Akpoti, in the suit marked FHC/ABJ/CS/122/2019 filed on Monday, anchored her prayer on Bello’s alleged double registration as a voter in 2011 and 2017.

Apart from disqualification, the plaintiff also asked the court to bar Bello, the governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress in the forthcoming poll, from contesting the governorship election or election for any public office for 10 years.

She also prayed for another order compelling the Independent National Electoral Commission to “thoroughly investigate the act of double registration” and “to immediately prosecute him upon the expiration of his first tenure of office as governor of Kogi State in January 2020.”

The plaintiff’s lawyer, Chief Mike Ozekhome (SAN), contended that Bello’s act of double registration as a voter grossly violated section 24(e) of the Electoral Act.

Ozekhome argued that as part of the grounds of the suit that “by his wilful act of making double registration, Bello as APC’s candidate, “is not a fit and proper persons to be allowed by the 2nd defendant (INEC) to vote or be voted for in the forthcoming Kogi State governorship election, having committed acts of electoral fraud.”

In the affidavit she deposed to in support of the suit, Akpoti said she contested the March 23, 2019 Kogi Central Senatorial election but lost.

She noted that she had emerged as the Social Democratic Party’s candidate in the forthcoming governorship election in the state but was unjustifiably disqualified by INEC.

She alleged that Bello first registered as a voter in Abuja in 2011 and procured the second voter registration card in Lokoja, the Kogi State capital, in May 2017.

She added that as a confirmation of the alleged infraction by Bello, the governor subsequently transferred his Permanent Voter Card from Abuja to Lokoja while the second registration done in Lokoja was still subsisting.

She stated, “The transfer was carried out and his permanent voter card was issued to him on February 26, 2018, while his second registration at the Government House, Lokoja was and is still subsisting.

“That the 2nd defendant had severally threatened to prosecute Mr Yahaya Bello, the candidate of the 1st defendant for the said act of double registration with the commission (2nd defendant), but failed to take any discernible action in stopping him from contesting the office of the Governor of Kogi State.”

Akpoti also sought another declaration that Bello “is liable to be disqualified and/or barred from contesting, participating and/or voting in the forthcoming election being organised by the 2nd defendant on account of his wrongful violation of section 24(e) of the Electoral Act, 2010, as amended.”

She sought “an order to disqualify or bar” the governor from contesting the forthcoming election “or for any political office for the 10 years pursuant to his violation of the provisions of the section 24(e) of the Electoral Act, 2010, as amended.”

The suit has yet to be assigned to a judge for hearing.

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Amosun, 3000 others defect to PDP in Ogun state.

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As the 2020 chairmanship election date in Ogun state draws closer, Akeem Amosun, Allied for New Nigeria(ANN) House of Representative candidate for Abeokuta South in the last poll has led over 3000 supporters to the Peoples Democratic Party(PDP).

Speaking while making the formal declaration where he was received by the former House of Representatives member; Hon. Ladi Adebutu and PDP chieftain, Sikurullai Ogundele on Thursday, he said there is the need for unity in order to defeat the APC.

He said: “Our opponents are wicked, therefore, we need to be united. The nature of elections as seen throughout the federation are now being militarized brazenly.

“The forthcoming elections can only be won by landslide, therefore, I urge all parties to stand united and coalesce as one body so that when they come with their thugs from Lagos we shall resist them.

“The APC government in the state lack competence and compassion. They can’t do anything without getting approval from Lagos. Ogun State is not Lagos subsidiary.“We are on a mission to rescue our state from incompetence, lack of compassion of APC government.”

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Sowore Finally Released from DSS Custody

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Sowore was released hours after the Federal High Court in Abuja had a 24 hour ultimatum to DSS to release both of them who had been in their custody despite their release on bail.

He is, however, expected to appear in court tomorrow for the commencement of trial.

Sowore was received by his lawyer Femi Falana and several of his supporters.

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APC primaries annulled and INEC restrained by court.

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A Federal High Court sitting in Yenagoa, on Thursday nullified the governorship primaries that produced Chief David Lyon as the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), for the Nov. 16 poll in the state.

Delivering judgment, Justice Jane Inyang, held that the primaries were conducted arbitrarily outside the rules of the party.

The suit filed by Sen. Heineken Lokpobiri, challenged conduct of the governorship primaries of APC which held on Sept.4.

She held that since the process was conducted in violation of the party’s constitution and guidelines as clearly spelt out for the conduct of governorship primaries, none of the aspirants should be fielded as the party’s candidate.

She therefore restrained the Independent Electoral Commission (INEC), from including Lyon as the APC candidate in the governorship election slated for Saturday.

Inyang noted that according to the APC guidelines for the conduct of the 2019 governorship primaries, the results were expected to be declared by the returning officer for the pre-election, Gov. Mai Kala Buni of Yobe and not Sen. Emmanuel Ochega, Secretary of the election Committee.

Inyang also held that the APC violated its own rules in the composition of the election panel when it constituted a one-member committee and not seven members as stipulated in the party rules.

“It has been established by judicial authorities and several judgments that political parties are bound by their own rules, the committee that conducted the primary threw caution to the winds and it is my ruling that the primaries stand nullified.

“The results announced by Sen Emmanuel Ochega is not valid as he is not the returning officer for the election.

“And I make an order restraining INEC from recognising any of the aspirants that participated in the said primaries”,Inyang said.

Lokpobiri had approached the court, to challenge the emergence of Mr David Lyon as the APC governorship candidate in the state.

Listed as respondents in the case are the APC, Lyon and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

Lokpobiri had claimed that he won the Sept. 4 governorship primaries conducted by the APC, using the direct primary mode.

The aspirants, who participated in the Sept. 4, APC governorship primaries in the state, included Lokpobiri, Aganaba Steven, Ebitimi Amgbare, Diseye Poweigha, David Lyon and Ongoebi Etebu.

A former Cross River Resident Electoral Commissioner, Briyai Frankland, was disqualified.

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