Don’t let Peterside inspect election materials – Wike asks Election Tribunal
Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State has asked the state Election Petitions Tribunal to set aside the order it made for the inspection of election materials used for the April 11, 2015 governorship election in the state.
Counsel to the governor Emmanuel Ukala, SAN in a motion dated June 16, 2015 asked the court to set aside the order granted on June 11, 2015 to inspect the materials used for the election.
In the motion, the governor said the order which was made after an ex-parte motion was moved by counsel to the petitioner, Olumide Olujinmi, was unknown to law.
Ukala further argued that the order was made despite a motion challenging the jurisdiction of the court pending before the court.
During Tuesday’s proceedings, the Chairman of the tribunal, Justice Muazu Abdulkadir Pindiga, fixed July 6, 2015 for the hearing of the motion.
The motion could not be heard on Tuesday because other parties in the petition filed by the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the state and its gubernatorial candidate, Dakuku Peterside in the election needed time to react to it.
The APC and its candidate had through their counsel sought the leave of the court to order the inspection of electoral materials used for the governorship election in the state.
In the motion ex-parte dated June 3 and filed on June 8, counsel to APC and Peterside, Mr. Olumide Olujinmi, prayed the court for an order allowing the inspection of the electoral materials related to the conduct of the gubernatorial election in the state.
He begged the court to order the inspections of Card Readers and records of electoral materials used in all the polling units in the state.
In a short ruling, the tribunal granted the requests of the applicants.
It however, asked the applicants to put the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Wike on notice on the request to conduct a forensic analysis on the computers, and computer servers used for the election.
The APC in the state and its candidate in the election are challenging the declaration of Wike as winner of the state governorship election.
The tribunal had earlier ordered that the state governor be served with the court summon through substituted means after the APC complained of difficulty in serving the processes on the Wike.