A Federal High Court sitting in Lokoja has dismissed a suit filed by the Speaker, Kolawole Matthew, seeking to be recognized as the House of Representatives candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) for Kabba-Bunu/Ijumu federal constituency in the 2023 general elections.
Justice Peter H. Mallong, in his ruling on Thursday, said the electoral umpire is entitled to set timeline for all his activities.
According to the Judge, once the timeline is passed, the court cannot force the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to extend the date, adding that such is the discretion of the electoral body.
The judge, therefore, ruled that the court could not compel INEC to open its portal and accept Kolawole’s candidacy.
The online publication recalls that Kolawole’s name was missing when the electoral umpire released the list of candidates of each party after the primary elections.
Kolawole, in a suit marked FHC/LKJ/CS/35/2022, sought the order of court directing the All Progressives Congress (APC) and Independent National Election Commission (INEC) to upload his particulars as the duly elected candidate of APC in the primary election held on the 27th May, 2022.
According to him,he scored the highest valid vote there upon nominated as approved by the National Working Committee of APC for Kabba-Bunu/Ijumu Federal Constituency in the forthcoming 2023 general elections.
FHC Judgement: Kogi Speaker Urge Supporters and Party Faithfuls to Remain Calm, promises to approach higher court to ensure that justice is served.
Meanwhile, the Speaker has urged his supporters and party faithful to remain calm and be law abiding, assuring them that arrangements were on to approach the Court of Appeal, to review the decision of the lower court in the suit in line with instant laws.
Kolawole have the advice in a statement signed by his Chief Press Secretary, Femi Olugbemi and made available to newsmen in Lokoja.
The speaker said he has directed his “erudite legal team” to immediately set in motion, all arrangements needed to appeal the outcome of the judgement.
He stressed firm belief and confidence in the judiciary to serve justice at the appellate court, saying that his decision to challenge the judgement was premise on the fact that many of the party’s candidates in other Constituencies in the country in his category had got judgement in their favor
According to him,Kabba/Bunu/Ijumu Federal Constituency cannot be an exception.
He said there was no controversy about the fact that, he emerged the winner of the party primary held on the 27th May, 2022 in Kabba.
The speaker assured his supporters and party faithful that APC,as a party, would be on the ballot to contest the election for Kabba/Bunu/Ijumu Federal Constituency during 2023 general elections,no matter the efforts of detractors.