The Supreme Court on Wednesday affirmed the election of Mr. Nyesom Wike as the governor of Rivers State.
A seven-man panel led by the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Mahmud Mohammed affirmed his on Wednesday.
The court will, however, give reasons for the judgment on February 12.
In arriving at the ruling, the Supreme Court set aside the judgment
of the tribunal and the Court of Appeal which had both sacked Wike.
Justice Kudirat Kekere-Ekun, who read the judgment held that the appeal filed by Wike was meritorious.
She held, “I find and hold that this appeal is meritorious and it is
allowed. The judgement of the lower court delivered on the 16th of
November 2015 and the judgment of the tribunal delivered on 24th October
2015 are hereby set aside.
“The petition of the petitioners is dismissed. The return of Nyesom
Wike as governor of Rivers State by the Independent National Electoral
Commission is restored.”
Justices Mohammed, Ibrahim Mohammed Sylvester Ngwuta, Kumai Akaahs
and Amiru Sanusi, who were members of the panel agreed with
Kekere-Ekun’s lead judgment.
The candidate of the All Progressives Congress in the April 11, 2015
poll, Dakuku Peterside and his party had filed a petition before the
Rivers State Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal to challenge
Wike’s return by INEC as the winner of the April 11, 2015 governorship
election in the state.
The tribunal, which sat in Abuja held, in its judgment of October 24,
2015, in favour of the petitioners, voided the election on grounds of
widespread violence and non-compliance with the Electoral Act.
It ordered a rerun election within 90 days.
Wike, PDP and INEC appealed the tribunal’s decision at the Court of
Appeal, Abuja. The appellate court, in a unanimous judgment by a
five-man panel on November 16, 2015 upheld the tribunal’s judgment.