A Federal High Court in Port Harcourt has summoned the Independent National Electoral Commission, Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, others to appear before it to defend why the forthcoming governorship and State Assembly elections should not be suspended.
The governorship candidate of the Africa Democratic Congress, Chief Tonte Ibraye and the party itself, had sought the suspension of the scheduled March 11 governorship election in the state.
In an ex parte motion in pursuant to Order 26, Rule 1, 2, 3, 6 (1) and 7, Order 28 Rule 1(1) and (2) of the Federal High Court (Civil Procedure) Rule 2019 of the court, Tonte stated that the new Executive Orders of the Rivers state government negatively impacted the electoral process in the just concluded presidential and National Assembly election in the state.
But the ex parte motion transferred to be heard in Port Harcourt, which was received by Registrar of the Federal High Court in Port Harcourt, Mrs G. I. Obata, was heard today.
The presiding judge, Justice A. T. Mohammed, therefore, ordered that the defendants, the Governor of Rivers State (1st defendant), Attorney General of Rivers State (2nd defendant), Peoples Democratic Party (3rd defendant), INEC (4th defendant) to appear before it tomorrow, March 8 at 1p.m.
According to Vanguard, the order was for the parties to be present to argue why Saturday’s polls should not be suspended.
The plaintiffs want an order of Interim injunction restraining the first defendant by itself, its representatives, agents, privies and/or anybody, acting through it from further implementation and enforcement of the Executive Order RVSG-21 2022 issued on October 4, 2022 and Executive Order RVsG-22 2022 issued on November 11, 2022 by the first defendant pending the determination of the motion on notice before the court.
They also seek an order of interim injunction restraining the fourth defendant (INEC) by itself, its representatives, agents, privies and/or anybody, acting through it from proceeding to conduct the forthcoming gubernatorial election scheduled to hold on March 11 in Rivers State, pending the determination of the motion on notice before the court.