Court adjourns Sylva's running mate case to Sept13

Court adjourns Sylva’s running mate case to Sept13

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Court adjourns Sylva's running mate case to Sept13

Bayelsa state map

Court adjourns Sylva’s running mate case to Sept13. The case filed by an All Progressives Congress governorship aspirant in Bayelsa State, Isikima Johnson, who is challenging the eligibility of the party’s deputy governorship candidate, Joshua Maciver, for the November 11 polls, has been adjourned to September 13, 2023, by the Federal High Court sitting in Yenagoa.

After both parties agreed on a date during the court session on Monday, the presiding judge, Justice Olaide Quadiri, deferred the case marked FHC/YNG)/114/2023.

According to Johnson, Maciver was supposedly convicted of murder and terrorism by a court of competent jurisdiction in 2006, and as such, he was not entitled to be Timipre Sylva’s running mate.

She also claims that Maciver lied under oath when he stated that he was not an ex-convict on the Independent National Electoral Commission’s form.

On Monday, Johnson’s counsel, Leizou Elijah, informed the court that they had submitted an application for conversion of the original summons to pleadings (writ of summons).

However, due to the unavailability of the plaintiff and defendant’s legal teams to complete the exchange of filed proceedings, the case was postponed until September 13.

Justice Quadiri therefore directed that all processes should be served on all parties before the adjourned date “for hearing of all pending applications and the substantive suit.”

Counsel to Johnson, Leizou Elijah, declined comments on the matter when approached by journalists for an interview at the end of proceedings.

But Dr Ogwu Onoja, SAN, the lead counsel for Sylva and Maciver, who was represented by Benjamin Ogbara, said they had earlier filed a counter affidavit and preliminary objection which had been served on the plaintiff.

He claimed he was confident that the court would not entertain the case as it was statute barred.

“We filed our counter-affidavit and preliminary objection, and we served on them,” he said. But when we were at court today, we were told that they had filed a request to convert the originating process, which they filed on May 25th, to pleadings (writ of summons), and that we had not been served with that process.

“The process, as far as I’m concerned, is in court.” I know that the court cannot entertain this matter. That is basically what I know about it because the matter is statute barred.”

Recall that the APC had on April 25 forwarded the names of Sylva and Maciver to the INEC as its validly nominated governorship and deputy candidates for the Bayelsa polls, and the commission had since published their candidatures accordingly.

Sylva received 52, 061 votes to become the APC’s standard bearer, while Maciver received 2, 078 votes in the party’s primary election held in the state on April 14 and 15. Also, the APC governorship candidate in 2019, David Lyon got third position with 1,584 votes, and Prof. Ongoebi Etebu polled 1,277 votes while Isikima Johnson and Festus Daumiebi scored 584 votes and 557 votes respectively.


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