Tue. Apr 20th, 2021

Barely 48 hours to the senatorial bye election for Cross River North, a Federal High Court sitting in Calabar on Thursday affirmed Dr Stephen Odey as the candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) for the bye election.

Ruling in the suit with number FHC/CA/CS/87/2020, the presiding judge, Justice S.A. Amobeda, held that Dr Odey was the validly nominated candidate of the PDP for the said bye election.

Relying on relevant provisions of the 1999 constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended), provisions of the Electoral Act 2020 and Articles of the People’s Democratic Party Guidelines for conduct of its primaries, Justice Amobeda ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to publish the name of Dr Odey as the duly nominated candidate of the PDP to contest the election.

Citing the relevant provisions of the constitution, the electoral act and articles of PDP guidelines for conduct of primaries, the court held that INEC “is compelled and bound by law to publish the name of the 1st defendant (Dr Stephen Odey), who was validly nominated by the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) and whose name was submitted by the PDP to INEC list of nominated candidates to contest the Cross River North Senatorial District bye election now scheduled to hold on the 5th day of December 2020.”

The court further directed INEC to “publish the name of the plaintiff (Dr Stephen Odey) as the duly nominated candidate of the People’s Democratic Party to contest the Cross River North Senatorial District bye election now scheduled to hold on the 5th of December 2020.”

It also granted a perpetual restraining order on INEC, restraining it “either by themselves, agents, privies or surrogates from doing anything whatsoever and however, that will adversely affect the candidature of the plaintiff (Dr Stephen Odey) to contest the Cross River North Senatorial District bye election now scheduled to hold on the 5th day of December 2020 on the platform of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP).”

(Tribune)

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