The Federal High Court sitting in Abuja on Monday ruled that the Action Alliance (AA) was ineligible to field candidates for the forthcoming governorship elections in Bayelsa and Kogi states.
Justice Inyang Ekwo held that the party failed to comply with the Independent National Electoral Commission’s guidelines that all political parties must submit their nomination forms by 6 pm of September 9, 2019.
AA, along with its Kogi State governorship candidate, Dr Samuel Alfa, and his Bayelsa State counterpart, Ebi Peretiemo, had jointly filed the suit marked, FHC/ABJ/CS/1100/19, where-in they contended that having complied with the provisions of 85(1) to (2) and section 31(1) of the Electoral Act, INEC could not have validly rejected the nomination of their candidates for the forthcoming elections in the two states.
The plaintiffs at the court said they were at the INEC headquarters on September 9, 2019 to submit Forms CF.001 and CF.002, among other nomination forms for the two candidates and that they were given tag number 15, but an INEC official in charge of the collection of the forms refused to accept their forms when it got their turn.
Delivering judgment yesterday, Justice Ekwo held that the plaintiffs failed to provide evidence that they were on the premises of INEC or attempted to submit their forms before 6 pm on September 9, 2019.
“I hold that their case lacks merit,” the judgment said and ruled that, “The first plaintiff (AA), Having not complied with the guidelines and regulations of INEC that it must submit its candidates’ nomination forms on or before 6 pm on September 9, 2019, is ineligible to field candidates in the November 2019 governorship election in Kogi and Bayelsa states”.