…affirms disqualification of Tonye Cole and other Rivers APC candidates
The Court of Appeal, Port Harcourt Division yesterday confirmed that the
APC in Rivers State will not field any candidates during the 2019
General elections, as it dismissed the appeal filed by the factional
Rivers State APC Governorship Candidate, Mr Tonye Cole.
The Court of Appeal, PH Division also confirmed the
executives, local government executives and State executives as it
dismissed the appeal filed by Sacked Rivers State APC State Chairman, Mr
Ojukaye Flag Amachree.
The Court of Appeal Port Harcourt Division Special Panel Chaired by
Justice Abubakar Yahaya dismissed the two appeals for lack of merit.
The third appeal which centred on the judgement by Justice Chinwendu
Nwogu was dismissed because it was filed out of time and therefore
Delivering his judgement Justice Yahaya said the appeal against the
Justice Chinwendu Nwogu High Court judgement on the party Congress
crisis lacks merit, adding that the application for joinder failed to
observed the 14 days rules of Appeal.
While delivering judgement on the substantive appeal that bothered on
Justice Nwogu’s judgement, the panel ruled that the Ojukaye faction
failed to seek leave of court before appealing against the judgement.
Justice Yahaya ruled that the judgement delivered at the lower court was
a consent judgement, adding that Ojukaye faction should have done the
needful legally before approaching the court.
Counsel to Ibrahim Umar and 22 others, Mr Patrick Luke said that the
rulings of the Court of Appeal confirm that the judgement by Justice
Chinwendu Nwogu remains valid and is still subsisting.
Counsel to Ojukaye Flag Amachree, Emenike Ebete noted that the court
heard the three matters and in her wisdom arrived at the rulings
confirming the judgment of Justice Chinwendu Nwogu.
He said: “Arguments were taken but the Court in its infinite wisdom held
that in appeal 461, that is the substantive appeal, that the consent
judgement of the High Court of Rivers state and by provision of the
constitution, we ought to have sought leave of court to appeal against
that consent judgement. That is their own decision and they struck it
“The one for the candidates and the party state excos, we were dismissed
on the ground that it was a pre-election matter, that we did not bring
the application within 14 days after decision was delivered on October
10. What that means is that, we will approach the Supreme court to
contest the judgment “.
It will be recalled that on October 10, 2018, a High Court in Port
Harcourt nullified the nomination of Mr Tonye Cole as the Governorship
Candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Rivers State on the
ground that his nomination is a function of illegality and
According to Vanguard, the Court also nullified the the Rivers State APC
Senatorial, House of Representatives and House of Assembly Primaries
conducted on the premise of the illegal ward congresses.
The High Court further nullified all the elections of Rivers APC Ward
Executives, Local Government Executives and State Executive Committee
that arose from the illegal ward congresses.
In a judgment delivered by Justice Chiwendu Nwogu in a suit filed by
Ibrahim Imah and twenty-two others against the APC, the Court declared
that the ward congresses of Rivers APC were illegal because they were
not conducted in line with the APC Guidelines and Constitution.