The Supreme Court has affirmed the election of Diri Duoye as the governor of Bayelsa State and also dismissed the suit by another aspirant, Timi Alaibe’s challenging the emergence of Duoye as the Peoples Democratic Party candidate in November 2019 governorship election in the state.
While affirming Duoye’s election, the apex court held that Alaibe’ suit seeking the justification of Duoye’s candidacy was a pre-election matter.
It would be recalled that Alaibe had lost the suit at both the Federal High Court in Owerri and the Port Harcourt Division of the Court of Appeal. The aspirant had in the suit challenged the participation of two delegates who voted in the primary that led to Diri’s emergence as the party’s candidate.
In his appeal marked: SC/248/2020, Alaibe, who is a former Managing Director of the Niger Delta Development Commission(NDDC) also sought to among others, set aside the judgment of the Court of Appeal, which upheld the declaration of Diri as the winner of the governorship primary of the PDP held on September 3, 2019, for lacking in merit.
But, the Justice Olabode Rhodes-Vivour-led five-man panel of the apex court dismissed the appeal on the ground that issues raised in the appeal were not about the primary election but about an internal affair of the party which the court lacked jurisdiction to hear.