Femi Folaranmi, Yenagoa
A governorship aspirant on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Bayelsa State, Preye Aganaba, has asked the court to void the APC primaries held on September 4 and which produced Chief David Lyon as the flag bearer of the party.
The Governor Mala Mai Buni-led electoral committee had declared Lyon winner of the direct primaries stating that he polled 42, 138 votes.
But Aganaba had described Lyon’s victory as a political hoax and warned the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to distance itself from the exercise, while praying the National Working Committee (NWC) of the APC to reject the result.
Dissatisfied with the handling of his complaints by Mr Shuiabu Aruwa-led Appeal Committee, Aganaba dragged the APC, Lyon and INEC to court as defendants in a suit he personally filed on September 12.
The aspirant urged the court to make a declaration that the primaries scheduled for September 4 across the 105 wards in the eight local government areas of the state did not take place.
He also asked the court to make a declaration that since there were no primaries, the declaration of results that produced David Lyon as the candidate of the party was illegal, unconstitutional, null and void and of no effect.
The aspirant further demanded an order setting aside the results of the APC primary election, which returned Lyon as the candidate of the party for November 16 election.
He further asked the court to make an order “restraining the APC from presenting Lyon or submitting his name to INEC as candidate of the APC.”
Other reliefs are: “An order restraining INEC from receiving, acting on, publishing or listing the name of Lyon as the governorship candidate of APC.
“An order restraining Lyon from parading himself as or holding himself out as the candidate of the APC in the forthcoming Bayelsa State governorship election.”
Speaking at the court premises after filing the suit, Aganaba said he stood on his earlier statement that the APC primary election in Bayelsa was a mockery of democracy.
He said: “There was no primary election in Bayelsa and since there was no primary poll, there won’t be a candidate. It is only a primary election that produces a candidate for an election. And if anybody is parading himself as a candidate without a primary poll, the person is simply wasting his time.
“We have made our point clear but since they failed to address our complaints that there were no primaries in Bayelsa, we have decided to approach the court to interpret to us whether what happened in Bayelsa could qualify for a primary of a political party.”