Nigeria’s apex court, the Supreme Court, has dismissed the appeal of the Rivers state governor, Nyesome Wike, today, October 27.
The appellant had objected that the court lacked merit to relocate the case to Abuja. But in its ruling, the supreme court upheld the right of the court to relocate the case to a tribunal sitting in Abuja following the absence of a chief judge at that time.
The court said the case was relocated by the president of the law court to Abuja basically due to security issues prevailing in Rivers state.
This the court said was to safeguard the lives of the chairman of the INEC and others involved in the case.
It said therefore that the tribunal was rightly constituted. It also added that the president of the court of appeal had a duty to ensure the safety of the court of tribunal by directing them to sit in Abuja to enable the tribunal to discharge its duty.
All five judges of the supreme court agreed with the judgement.
A tribunal in Abuja had on Saturday, October 2 ruled that the election in Rivers state that saw Wike elected as the state’s governor be cancelled and re-run.
Following the tribunal ruling Wike stated that he remained in charge of Rivers state, and he also vowed to appeal the court’s ruling.
The petition challenging the election of Wike as the Rivers state governor was filed by Dakuku Peterside, the gubernatorial candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
The APC alongside its gubernatorial candidate, had been contesting the declaration of Governor Wike by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) as the winner of the Rivers state governorship poll in the April 11 gubernatorial election.