Timi Alaibe Sues PDP, Others Over Bayelsa Governorship Primary

Former managing director of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Timi Alaibe, has sued the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) over the outcome of the Bayelsa State governorship primary.

The party had named Senator Douye Diri, who represents Bayelsa Central at the National Assembly, as its candidate for the November 16 governorship election at the primary held on September 3.

Unsatisfied with Diri’s emergence, Mr Alaibe on Friday approached the Federal High Court in Yenagoa with an application for cancellation of the result of the primary election based on cited procedural flaws.

The suit filed pursuant to Order 3(9) of the Federal High Court (Civil Procedure) Rules 2019, seeks answers to questions bordering on non-adherence to the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, the Electoral Act 2010, the Peoples Democratic Party Constitution and Election Guidelines, by the state chapter of the party in the conduct of the ward congresses, inclusion of local government council officials in the delegates list and the procedure for inclusion of three ad-hoc delegates.

Citing specific sections of relevant laws and guidelines, Alaibe is asking the court to examine the entire processes that resulted in the primaries and rule in his favour in the light of alleged violations committed.

Listed as defendants in the suit with reference number FHC/YNG/CS/99/2019 are the PDP, Diri, Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), and Embeleakpo Alale for himself and representing the elected local government chairmen, vice-chairmen and councillors of the PDP allowed to be delegates in the primary election.

Also joined in the suit as defendant is Doubra Kumokou, for himself and on behalf of the three ad-hoc delegates allowed to be delegates at the elective State Congress.

Alaibe, a former special adviser to the president on Niger Delta affairs, wants the court to determine whether the pre-election actions and inactions of the defendants satisfied conditions specified in relevant sections of Nigeria’s Constitution, the Electoral Acts and certain sections of the PDP Constitution.

He is praying the court to declare the entire processes unconstitutional and the declaration of Senator Diri as the winner be declared invalid having failed to comply with relevant sections of the laws governing such processes.

Alaibe is also seeking an order setting aside the submission of Diri’s name to INEC by the PDP as its candidate in the governorship election coming up on November 16, 2019 in view of the several legal and procedural infractions cited.

He wants the court to order the conduct of fresh primary elections for the nomination and sponsorship of the candidate for the governorship election in Bayelsa State.

No date has yet been fixed for hearing in the case.

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