BAYELSA COUNCIL ELECTIONS: COURT ORDERS BYSIEC TO IMMEDIATELY CONDUCT POLLS

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A High Court sitting in Yenagoa has adopted out of Court settlement terms by parties in a suit instituted against The Governor of Bayelsa State; BYSIEC; The Bayelsa State Government; and The State Attorney General by Accord Party and nine others.

The petitioners, including Mr. Victor Fisi, State Chairman of Accord Party were among other things praying the court to declare that: the failure and refusal to conduct local government council elections is unlawful; and also that appointment of local government caretaker committees is illegal, null and void.

They had further asked the court, presided over by Justice Y.E. Ogola for an order setting aside the appointments of Local Government Caretaker Committees; and an injunction restraining the defendants by themselves or through persons appointed by them from withdrawing, using spending or allocating funds of the local government councils.

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However, following series of negotiations for amicable out of court settlement by both parties they, among other things, mutually agreed to ask the court to grant “An order directing the defendants to immediately conduct the said local government council elections in Bayelsa state having earlier agreed to conduct it.

Reacting to the court ruling, Commissioner for Legal Services in the Bayelsa State Independent Electoral Commission, BYSIEC, Barr. Marshal Abraham said it has conferred legal competence on the commission to carry on with processes of the council elections slated for August tenth, emphasizing that the date remains sacrosanct.

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Barr. Abraham equally explained that an ex-parte order granted some persons by an Abuja High Court on conduct of the elections lasted only seven days, and with the substantive judgement delivered in Yenagoa today, August 24, 2019; there is no legal constraint in conducting the August tenth local government elections in Bayelsa State.

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