Bayelsa: Oshiomhole Cries Foul: Says PDP Candidate Did Not Meet Constitutional Requirement
National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Adams Oshiomhole in his reaction to Thursday’s ruling of the Supreme Court that declared the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Bayelsa State, Senator Duoye Diri, winner, says he cannot be sworn in Friday because he did not meet the mandatory 2/3 constitutional requirement in the vote spread across the state.
Oshiomhole said no other candidate met that requirement and thus canvassed for fresh elections.
INEC had declared David Lyon, the candidate of the All Progressives Congress, APC, winner but the apex court annulled the party’s victory because his running mate, Biobarakuma Degi-Eremienyo presented fake educational certificates.
Oshimhole said: “From the online reports we have read, the Supreme Court ruled that the certificate of return earlier issued to David Lyon be withdrawn and directed INEC to issue a certificate of return to the person who scored the highest votes after Lyon if such a person has the required spread.”
“As a political party, we respect the rule and we respect and have confidence in the judiciary. However, this judgement lacks the fruits of justice. For me and our party, at the heart of election is the issue of who did the people actually voted for?”
“Is there a case of impersonation on the part of the deputy governor elect? Is there any other person who has come out to claim that name as to raise doubt as to whether this is the deputy governor elect dually elected along with the governor during the Bayelsa governorship election.”
“Where justice and democracy thrive on the alter of technicalities, it constitute danger to our democracy. Nobody has raised issues whether David Lyon and his running mates won over whelming majority.”
“Issues of whether a chieftaincy title is part of a name or not could not be a reason to dismiss the wishes of the great people of Bayelsa state who reposed absolute confidence in the election of David Lyon and his running mate during the last governorship election.”
“It is not a state secret. If as the Supreme Court has ruled, David Lyon cannot be sworn in as governor and that the person who has the highest number of vote and spread be sworn in, it simply means that from tomorrow, there will be no government in Bayelsa state.”
“As far as we know, the next candidate who happen to be a PDP candidate does not have one quarter of the total lawful votes cast in that election in two third of the eight local government areas in Bayelsa state.”
“Therefore, from the facts available to us and in consultations with our lawyer, it is clear that there no candidate that meets the requirements of the law which means that no one can be sworn in tomorrow legally unless there is deliberate abuse of the legal process.”
“We have accordingly asked our lawyers to look at all the windows that exist in law and take steps to ensure that the will of the people of Bayelsa state is not undermined on the whims of technicalities.”
“When judges make judgements, they are published and there are those ones that laymen can understand. In 1999, there was a similar case in Bauchi involving Governor Adamu Muazu.”
“The court found that his running mate was not qualified to contest the election and the Supreme Court nullified the election of Adamu Muazu and directed INEC to conduct a fresh election.”
“I believe it is the same Supreme Court and therefore, we have asked our lawyers to explore all legal windows to ensure that Bayelsa people are not denied their wishes.”
“Let me say that bad as the case of Zamfara was where after we have won the elections, the court held that APC did not conduct primaries and therefore did not participate in that election. This one is totally different because proper election was conducted.”
“This is not another Zamfara case. The essential ingredients are different and so, the outcome and consequences cannot be the same. We want to assure our members across and Nigerians that we are a law abiding party, we still believe that the will of Bayelsa people will prevail.”