THE Court of Appeal Abuja Division has dismissed a suit that challenged the emergence of Cross Rivers State governor Ben Ayade as the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) for Cross River North Senatorial District in the 2023 general elections.
The appeal was filed by Cecilia Adams, an aspirant in the May 28, 2022 senatorial primary election.
Adams, who scored zero votes in the primary, had earlier lost at the Federal High Court, Abuja before proceeding to the appeal court.
She had refused to partake in another primary conducted on July 14, 2022 for the Cross River North Senatorial District.
In a ruling on Friday, February 10, a panel of the Court of Appeal led by Justice Stephen Adah upheld the verdict of the Federal High Court in a unanimous decision.
The appellate court rejected the reliefs sought by the plaintiff in her originating summons, which included ordering the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to recognise, accept and publish her name as the candidate of the APC for the Cross River North Senatorial District.
The Respondents in the matter include Ayade, the APC, Martin Orim and INEC (the 1st, 2nd and 4th Defendants, respectively).
Ayade was elected at a primary election rerun unopposed when the 2nd defendant, Orim, who had earlier won the May 28, 2022 primary, resigned to enable a fresh primary to be conducted by INEC.
However, challenging the development, Adams petitioned the Federal High Court in Abuja through an originating summons that was submitted on July 26, 2022, asking the court to restrict INEC and others from recognising Ayade as the candidate for the Cross River North Senatorial district.