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Appeal court nullifies sacking of Bayelsa governor Diri

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A five-man panel of the court of appeal has overturned a ruling which nullified the election of Douye Diri as governor of Bayelsa State on Friday.

The court held that the Bayelsa Election Petition Tribunal acted outside its jurisdiction by nullifying the election of Diri’s election.

In a unanimous judgment, the five-man panel of the court said the Advanced Nigeria Democratic Party failed to show that it had a valid candidature that was unlawfully excluded by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

The court berated the tribunal for ignoring the fact that the petition of ANDP was status barred in addition to the fact that the party presented an unqualified candidate to INEC in the November 16, 2019 Governorship election in Bayelsa State.

The Bayelsa State Gubernatorial Petition Tribunal in August nullified Diri’s election.

The election was nullified based on a petition filed by the Advanced Nigeria Democratic Party, which argued that it was unlawfully excluded from participating in the election.

Delivering judgment on Monday, August 17, the panel, led by Justice Yunusa Musa, ruled that the election was unlawful due to the exclusion of ANDP and its candidate.

Justice Musa also ordered INEC to conduct a fresh election in Bayelsa within 90 days.

The tribunal had earlier dismissed three petitions that sought Diri’s sacking as Bayelsa State governor.


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