Appeal Court Nullifies All Rivers Senators’ Elections, Orders Re-run

SenateThe Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja on Friday sacked two senators from Rivers State. They are Osinachukwu Idoezu (Rivers South-West Senatorial District) and John Olaka-Nwogo (Rivers South-East).

The judgment was delivered in an appeal brought by Magnus Abbe and Otelemagba Dan-Amachree of the All Progressive Congress.

Justice Ali Gumel, in the lead judgment, held among others, that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) failed, in its conduct of the elections, to comply substantially with the provisions of the Electoral Act and other guidelines for the March 28, 2015 National Assembly Election.

He upheld the appeals filed by the APC and its candidates and ordered INEC to conduct fresh elections in the affected senatorial districts within 60 days.

Earlier on Thursday evening, the Court had nullified the election of George Thompson Sekibo, representing Rivers East Senatorial District on the platform of Peoples Democratic Party.

The appellate court, in a judgment on an appeal by Andrew Ibonule Uchendu and his party, the APC, upheld the appeal and upturned the decision of the Rivers State National Assembly Election Petition Tribunal that sat in Abuja earlier this year, which upheld Mr. Sekibo’s election.

With the sacking of Idoezu and Olaka-Nwoga yesterday, the number of senators from Rivers State whose elections were nullified by the appellate court stands at three. This means that the state is presently not represented in the red chamber.