Supreme Court hears Tonye Cole’s case against Rivers gov today

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The Supreme Court sitting in Abuja will on Monday (today) hear the appeal by the All Progressives Congress candidate in Rivers State, Patrick Tonye Cole, against Governor Siminalayi Fubara, the Independent National Electoral Commission, and the ruling Peoples Democratic Party.

Tonye-Cole, in his appeal, alleged that Fubara did not resign as Accountant General of the state under the deadline stipulated by the constitution and the Electoral Act.

Cole had in October, 2023, appealed the judgment of the state election petition tribunal which upheld the victory of Fubara, expressing the hope that the Appeal Court will overturn the judgment.

The suit number is CA/ABJ/EP/Gov/RV/121/2023.

However, the State and National Assembly Appeal Court sitting in Lagos on November 28, 2023, affirmed the election of Fubara in the March 18 2023 governorship election.

The Appeal Court in a unanimous decision dismissed four separate appeals filed by Tonye Cole of All Progressive Congress, Beatrice Itubo of the Labour Party, Innocent Ekwu of the Allied People’s Movement, and Lulu Briggs Dumo of the Accord Party.

The court held that all the Appellants failed to prove the allegation of non-compliance with the Electoral Act.

The court also faulted the tribunal for dismissing Tonye Cole’s appeal on the ground that APC sponsored him and had withdrawn the petition against Governor Fubara’s victory.

The appellate court further held that the fact that APC withdrew its petition against Fubara’s victory does not prevent its candidate, Tony Cole from pursuing his appeal.

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