- Advertisement -

Rivers governorship election The tribunal has reserved its decision on Tonye Cole’s case.

Posted by

On Wednesday, the Rivers State Election Petition Tribunal, sitting in Abuja, reserved judgment on the petition brought by Mr Tonye Cole, the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate in the Rivers governorship election on March 18.

- Advertisement -

Cole is contesting the win of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Governor Siminalayi Fubara.

After the parties adopted their final written addresses and stated their arguments for and against the petition, the three-member tribunal, led by Justice Cletus Emifonye, adjourned the matter for judgment.

- Advertisement -

Fubara received 302,614 votes to win the election, while the APC candidate received 95,274 votes and Beatrice Itubo of the Labour Party (LP) received 22,224 votes to finish third.

Chief Tuduru Ede, SAN, the lead lawyer for Cole, told reporters shortly after the sitting on Wednesday that over 40 witnesses were summoned and exhibits totaling thousands of dollars were tendered in the course of the case.

- Advertisement -

“The main tenet of our case is that the second respondent (Fubara) was not qualified to run at the time of the election.”

“He did not resign as Accountant-General and Permanent Secretary in Rivers State.”

“We presented evidence to that effect, and we await the tribunal’s decision,” he said.

Mr Cole, who was also present at the tribunal, stated that he trusted the judiciary and God that justice will be served in his case.

“First and foremost, I am grateful to the team of lawyers who stood firm, refused to be intimidated, and presented very accurate facts.”

“I am very pleased with what has been presented as our final address today.”

“And I am trusting the tribunal and my Lord, God Almighty, that justice will be done,” he stated.

He stated that he was before the tribunal to reclaim the mandate that had been stolen from him.

“We know exactly what happened on election day, but that’s not what we’re doing in court.”

“What we are here in court to do is secure the mandate that was taken away from us in March, and I just want to assure everyone in Rivers that we will do everything in our power to ensure that justice is done.”

“We presented the case, and now we wait for the outcome.” The verdict is only a few weeks away. So let us be patient and firm. “We’re going to fight this until the end,” he stated.

Mr Nyesom Wike, Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), who was also present at the hearing, refused to talk to reporters.

He merely stated, “Go and speak to them (the lawyers).”

Attempts to communicate with respondents’ counsel, Mr Kanu Agabi, SAN (INEC), and Mr Emmanuel Ukala, SAN (Fubara), were fruitless because they declined to speak, while Mr Joseph Daudu (PDP) could not be reached.

According to NAN, although Tonye Cole is the petitioner, INEC, Fubara, and the PDP are the first through third respondents in the lawsuit.

On September 7, the tribunal also reserved judgment in the petition brought by the Labour Party’s governorship candidate against Fubara’s victory.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *