ABUJA, Oct 25 (Reuters) - Nigeria's Supreme Court on Thursday nullified the election in the oil-producing Niger Delta state of Rivers, the third major indictment of April's vote this month.
The elections were meant to be a democratic milestone for Africa's most populous country, but they were so marred by fraud and violence that international observers said they were "not credible".
The Supreme Court ruled Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi, who won the primaries for the ruling People's Democratic Party (PDP) in December, was the lawfully elected governor of Rivers, not Celestine Omehia.
Omehia did not win the primary but his name replaced Amaechi's on the ballot as the PDP candidate in the April 14 vote.
The ruling has the potential of sparking a fresh wave of trouble in Africa's oil heartland, where politicians are backed by rival armed groups.
Omehia's removal came days after another court nullified of the election of Saidu Usman Dakingari, a son-in-law of President Umaru Yar'Adua, on Saturday as the governor of the northwestern state of Kebbi.
Dakingari, who defected from an opposition party shortly before the elections, was not a member of PDP when the party nominated him for the polls, the court said. Dakingari has said he will appeal against the ruling.
Another court in the central state of Kogi on Oct. 10 nullified the election of Ibrahim Idris as governor because the electoral body had removed the name of a key opposition party candidate from the ballot. Idris also said he will appeal.
Just want to say thanks brother for the above post. It is just a liner but made lots of sense to me bro.
And Andy Uba still wants the Supreme Court to overturn its previous ruling on the Anambra gubernatorial elections?. More Kudos to the Supreme Court. I am almost certain that the incoming governor of Rivers State will not be any better that the deposed, but that is not the issue. The issue is the rule of law. Open and fair election.With the way the supremes are interpreting the electoral law, people like me may actually have a shot at contesting future elections in our country. We don't have to win, we just want it to be fair. Once again, bravo to the supreme court justices of Nigeria.
What this should translate to is that PDP did not have a candidate in that election. So shouldn't the next candidate who was actually on the ballot become the governor.
We need to be careful of precedence.
The supreme court seem to be playing a role
Like it or hate it... naija politics is the best anywhere in the world (with the exception, of course, of some Asians that view punching each other out during parliamentary sessions as an effective strategy aimed at forcing opponents to agree with their positions whether they like it or no)... no dull moments at all with our brand of politics...!
Anywaz, kudos to the Supreme court for reasserting their position as the ultimate deciders. The judges have shown so far that they will not be swayed by GMG or choice plots in Abuja and their dedication to the cause must be applauded.
This is probably not the best choice as the new governor (who himself is stained by allegations of corruption) does not enjoy the mandate of the people... after all, there was no election in Rivers State for starters... but it will suffice for the time being until PDP or forces within the state legislature force him out of office and back to the courts.
We are progressing... slowly or surely sha... no doubt, we have a long waz yet to go!
PDP had a candidate, but the candidate was unfairly exluded from participating in the elections. Since the PDP won the elections, the court has now decided who among the contending PDP candidates is the right one. They found out it was Amaechi and said so in their judgement. Simple as that. Good precedent if I must say.
So why bother ask the people to choose, why not just ask the political party chieftains to do it amongst themselves.
The public will not choose a dog simply because a favorite party' presented him. They would natural go for the next best. So the logic espouse above just doesn't qualify.
If this is the way the Nigerian courts are interpreting the law, we are in trouble.
Party or not we still vote people, not umbrellas, or chicken or 'smily'.
Inconsistent with what was claimed earlier on, that we vote parties not individuals, cause the party might have rules that nominates next in line.
In as much as I salute the courage of the supreme court, I am confused, absolutely confused.
1. Amaechi did not participate in the election, Omehia did. So how come the supreme court is asking for Amaechi's installation instead of another election?
2. Amaechi, as the speaker of the Rivers State House of Assembly is having pending cases of corruption still in court, does this mean he goes under the immunity clause for another 4yrs+ probable 2nd term?
3. Rivers State, is one strong point for the PDP, since Amaechi has been suspended from the party, under which party is he being declared a winner?
I think the judgment is good, but far from settling the rifts that exist in the state. We will definitely be recording more cult clashes, as the the dust settles. In other words, the masses will surfer from this judgment.
So if someone runs on the ballot of women's right and environmental protection and was massively elected on that premise. He can be replaced by a 'polygamous timber trader' by his political party, even though the constituency's priority is best served by the fellow they voted for not necessarily his party.
GRADUALLY, GRADUALLY, THE BIRD IS COMING HOME.
I just like the Federal character that is being used to gradually dismantle the Iwuruwuru wey Baba Iyabo imposed on Nigeria.
KOGI --NORTH CENTRAL
KEBBI--- NORTH WEST
ANAMBRA--- SOUTH EAST
RIVERS----- SOUTH SOUTH
Now the big battle is coming o!!!! who will go in the SOUTHWEST and the NORTHEAST, remember these are the home base of both OBJ and ATIKU. Following the trend so far, it is almost certain that DELTA and ADAMAWA will roll. Who rolls in the SOUTHWEST or rather are there any clear cut case in the SOUTHWEST like it is in other regions.
I am enjoying this federal charater o!! so when we get a balance from all the six geopolitical zones, we can then start again cos we must have equity o!! before anyone says the Supreme court are biased towards one zone
LONG LIVE FEDERAL CHARACTER
This is also a pointer to the fact that corruption is a a common index across the country and not tan exclusive ability of a single region