The Bayelsa State Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Abuja, will, today deliver judgment in the petition brought before it by the All Progressives Congress (APC) and its governorship candidate in the state, Chief Timipre Sylva, challenging the election of Honourable Seriake Dickson, as the state governor in the December 5, 2015 and January 9, 2016 governorship election in the state.
The chairman of the tribunal, Justice Kazeem Alogba, fixed judgment in the petition for today following the adoption of written addresses by parties in the matter.
Sylva and his party, in their petition prayed the tribunal to cancel the election of Dickson as governor of the state on the ground of irregularities and violations of Electoral Act.
The tribunal, in the course of hearing of the petition, granted Sylva the permission to inspect the materials used for the election, which the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), declared Dickson, as the winner.
The materials inspected are the ballot papers used for the two elections, police security report, video and audio reports, appointed observers’ reports, duplicate copy of the certificate of return issued to Governor Dickson, among others.
The petition by the Action Alliance (AA) party seeking the cancellation of the election of governor Dickson on the ground of unlawful exclusion was withdrawn, following the submissions of the national legal adviser of the party, Mr Anaukyaa Nenge Peter, dis-associating the party from the petition and demanded its withdrawal.
His ground was that the national leadership of the party, through his office did not authorise the filing of the petition and that the petitioners had no mandate of the party to use the name of the party to file the petition.
Governor Dickson had objected to the application and the issue went as far as to the Supreme Court, which dismissed his objection.
The apex court agreed with Sylva’s counsel, Sebastine Hon, that Dickson’s objection against the playing of the video by the tribunal was misplaced, unwarranted, baseless, lacking in merit.
Meanwhile, anxiety has pervaded the state as the news filtered in that the tribunal sitting in Abuja will deliver judgement today on the governorship election between Dickson and Sylva.
It will be recalled that both Dickson and Sylva, have accused each other of rigging the election, that was characterised with irregularities.