Supreme Court Upholds Gov. Nyesom Wike’s Election as Rivers Governor.
*** Wike Dedicates Victory to God; Ekweremadu, Fayose Speak
The Supreme Court on Wednesday upheld the election of Nyesom Wike of the People’s Democratic Party as governor of Rivers State.
The court did not provide reasons for its judgment but noted that detailed reasons for the verdict would be provided on February 12.
The Court of Appeal had on December 16 affirmed the judgment of the Rivers Governorship Election Tribunal by ruling that Mr. Wike was not validly elected.
The Rivers Tribunal had earlier on October 24 nullified Mr. Wike’s election.
The tribunal, which delivered its ruling in Abuja, also ordered that a fresh governorship election be conducted in the state.
After the tribunal’s ruling, the governor headed to the Court of Appeal, saying the judgment was untenable.
The petition challenging the election of Mr. Wike as Rivers State Governor was filed by Dakuku Peterside, the candidate of the All Progressives Congress, in the election.
The Rivers governorship election, which was criticised by local and international observers, witnessed the largest amount of violence both in its build-up and after the elections.
Meanwhile Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike has declared that his victory at the Supreme Court is a victory for the rule of law and the people of Rivers State.
Governor Wike added that the Supreme Court judgment is a victory for democracy and a confirmation that the will of God will always prevail over the machinations of men.
In a statement issued by Simeon Nwakaudu, Special Assistant to the Rivers State Governor on Electronic Media, Governor Wike said that the judgment of the Supreme Court validation of his election is a confirmation of the mandate freely given to him by the people of the state.
Governor Wike trekked on the streets of Port Harcourt before ending up at the Government House. As he walked the streets he was greeted by celebrating Rivers people.
While assuring the people of Rivers State that his victory at the Supreme Court will lead to greater delivery of democracy dividends across the state, Governor Wike extended a hand of fellowship to the Rivers State APC Governorship Candidate, Dakuku Peterside to join hands with his administration to develop the state.
He praised the APC Governorship Candidate, Dr Dakuku Peterside for approaching the Judiciary, instead of embarking on violence.
He stated that the people of Rivers State will continue to benefit from the pro-people projects and programmes of his administration as he is determined to always to live up to the social contract he entered with the Rivers people.
Governor Wike specially thanked all Rivers people for their faith in him and his administration.
On his part, Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu described the victory of Governors Nyesom Wike and Dave Umahi of Rivers and Ebonyi States respectively at the Supreme Court as important for the People’s Democratic Party (PDP).
Ekweremadu who congratulated the governors said: “These are important victories, not only for the people of Rivers and Ebonyi States, but also for the PDP.
“These verdicts have further confirmed that both states are PDP strongholds and I have no doubt that the people are even further bolstered by this judgment to keep it so”.
Senator Ekweremadu in a statement by his Special Adviser on Media, Uche Anichukwu, also commended the apex court for “preserving the mandate of the people.
“By these verdicts, the Supreme Court has shown itself, once again, as the last hope of the common man. The apex court has continued to demonstrate that it has all that it takes to deepen our democracy and uphold the people’s rights to freely elect their leaders.”
He urged both governors to continue to reciprocate the people’s goodwill and support through the delivery of democracy dividends in their respective states.
Governor Wike’s election was confirmed by a unanimous judgement of a 7-man panel of the Supreme court which upturned the ruling of the Appeal court and that of the lower tribunal which had nullified his election and ordered a rerun.
For Governor Ayodele Fayose of Ekiti State, the judgment of the Supreme Court that affirmed the electoral victory of Rivers State Governor, Mr Nyessom Wike, as a step by the judiciary to free itself from the clutches of desperate politicians who want to ambush the judicial arm of government.
Speaking through his Chief Press Secretary, Mr Idowu Adelusi, in Ado-Ekiti, the governor said the apex court, by its decision, had shown that all hope was not lost as far as the judiciary was concerned.
Fayose lauded the people of Rivers State for solidly standing behind Wike and the governor for remaining steadfast in the face of serious provocation.
He thanked members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the state and Nigeria at large for not caving in to pressure.
“I rejoice with Governor Wike that his God-given mandate that some people wanted to take through the back door has been restored and the evil doers put to shame. I must commend the Supreme Court for living up to expectation and letting Nigerians know that all hope is not lost.
“This should teach those who believe they can reap where they did not sow, that in the end, a Daniel will come to judgment,” he said.
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