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Breaking: Court orders INEC to accept APC guber candidates in general elections
AN APPEAL Court sitting in Port Harcourt has stayed the execution of Federal High Court’s ruling which prevented the All Progressives Congress, APC from fielding its candidates in the forthcoming general elections in Rivers State.
Following an appeal filed by APC in the state to stay the execution of the judgment of the Federal High Court delivered by Justice Kolawole Omotosho, the Appeal Court granted one of its prayers and stayed the execution of the judgment.
Reading the ruling, Mohammed Mustapha stated that all parties affected by Justice Omotosho’s judgment have appealed it; therefore, it would be unjust not to grant the application to stay the execution of the ruling.
In January, Justice Kolawole Omotosho of the Federal High Court in Port Harcourt had nullified both the direct and indirect primaries conducted by two factions of the party. He also restrained INEC from recognising any candidates of the APC for the 2019 general election in the state.
While a faction of the party loyal to former Governor Rotimi Amaechi had produced Tonye Cole as its candidate from its primary, the other loyal to Senator Magnus Abe produced him as its own candidate.
The national secretariat of the party recognised Cole as the authentic candidate of the party and forwarded his name to INEC.
Ruling on a suit filed by Abe, the court observed that both the direct and indirect primaries were held while the suit at the Rivers State High Court was pending. Omotosho held that the APC conducted the indirect primaries in disregard of the pending suit before the court.
The court, therefore, held that the names sent by the Amaechi faction and the National Working Committee of the APC to INEC for the 2019 general elections were illegal and should be disregarded.