Legal fireworks intensify as eight political parties file petitions against INEC, PDP in Rivers
About eight political parties that participated in the March 18 governorship election in Rivers State have filed petitions at the state Election Petition Tribunal, challenging the outcome of the poll.
The petitioners are challenging the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the winner of the election, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Governor-elect, Siminalayi Fubara.
The petitioners are: Tonye Cole of the All Progressives Congress (APC); Magnus Abe of Social Democratic Party (SDP); Beatrice Itubo of Labour Party(LP); Dumo Lulu-Briggs of the Accord; Tekena Iyagba of Boot Party (BP); and Innocent Ekwu of Allied Peoples Movement (APM).
Others are Etete Sobere, People’s Redemption Party (PRP); and Gabriel Gborogbosi, Action Alliance Congress (AAC). The parties, in their separate petitions, approached the EPT over their dissatisfaction with the election, noting that it was marred by widespread irregularities, violence and voter intimidation.
Despite an eight-day protest by members and supporters of the PDP, where they requested a joint inspection of the Certified True Copies of election materials by all political parties, at the state INEC office, the petitioners nonetheless filed their petition.
As part of their prayer to the tribunal, LP and its governorship candidate are seeking the nullification of the governorship election on the grounds of voter intimidation.
They also asked the tribunal to conduct a fresh election. The party expressed optimism that the judiciary will acquit itself and ensure that justice is done in the matter.
The Guardian gathered there are 12 petitions for the Senate position, 26 petitions for the House of Representatives position and 20 petitions for the House of Assembly position.