Tony John, Port Harcourt
The Rivers State Governorship Election Tribunal (RSGET) has dismissed the petition filed by the candidate of the Labour Party (LP), Chief Isaac Wonwu, against the victory of Governor Nyesom Wike. Chairman of the RSGET, Justice O.K Kaigama, dismissed the petition yesterday, following a motion for withdrawal, moved by counsel for Wonwu, Mr. Uche Ulemene.
Kaigama also stated that the LP governorship candidate withdrew the petition on his own volition and that there were no illegal agreements that necessitated the withdrawal.
Counsel for the LP governorship candidate sought the leave of the tribunal to withdraw the petition and strike out same.
He informed the tribunal that his application to withdraw the petition was accompanied by a notice of consent to withdraw, marked as Exhibit A.
He added that also annexed was an affidavit against illegal terms of withdrawal.
Counsel for Wike, M.S Agwu, said that they were not opposed to the withdrawal. He announced that he filed an affidavit against any illegal terms of withdrawal, noting that the petitioner withdrew the petition on his own volition.
The tribunal dismissed the LP petition, EPT/RS/GOV/O4/2019, saying that the LP governorship candidate stated that he withdrew the petition in the interest of the state.
Counsel for the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Abdulhakeem Mustapha, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), informed the tribunal that INEC filed a preliminary objection to the petition. He stated that INEC was not opposing the application for withdrawal.
He announced that INEC filed a preliminary objection because the petition lacked merit and urged the tribunal to dismiss the petition.