Romanus Ugwu, Abuja
A Bayelsa State High court sitting in Sagbama has ordered the National Working Committee of the All Progressives Congress (APC) not to adopt direct primary in the conduct of the forthcoming governorship primaries in the state.
The interim order obtained by aggrieved members of the APC, restrained the NWC of APC from going ahead to conduct the forthcoming primary using direct procedure.
The applicants in the suit were Japan Christopher, Evinson Olotu, Oddu Oyimiebi and Obriki Isaiah, while the first respondents were Adams Oshiomhole and other members of the NWC and the second respondents were Hon Jonathan Amos and members of the State Working Committee of the party.
The applicants had prayed the court for an order “abridging the time for which the respondents might enter an appearance and file their respective counter affidavits and written addresses to the originating summons within seven days given the time-sensitive nature of the suit.’
They also prayed for the court for an “interim injunction restraining the first respondents from adopting the direct primaries procedure for the conduct of the party’s primary election for the 2019 Bayelsa State governorship election pending the hearing and determination of the originating summons.”
While granting the order in its entirety, the presiding judge, Hon Justice E G Umukoro, ordered that the enrolled order of the court be served along with hearing notice to the respondents within 48 hours.
Meanwhile, the NWC has shifted the date for the Bayelsa governorship primary from Thursday, August 29 to Saturday, August 31, 2019.
The party has also adopted the direct mode of primary, which according to them is in line with the written request of the Bayelsa State chapter and majority of the stakeholders.
“This is in compliance with the decision of the APC National Executive Committee (NEC), which grants state chapters and majority of party leaders in a state the right to decide on the mode of primary they wish to adopt,” the party said.