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Published On: Mon, Aug 29th, 2022

Delta PDP Guber Tussle: Sheriff Oborevwori Defeats David Edevbie At Appeal Court

JUDICIARY 3

LAGOS AUGUST 29TH (URHOBOTODAY)-The court of appeal sitting in Abuja has affirmed the nomination of Sherrif Oborevwori as the governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Delta state.

A three-member panel of the appellate court, led by Olabisi Ige, overturned the judgement of an Abuja federal high court which directed the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to recognise David Edevbie as the duly elected candidate of the PDP for the governorship election.

During the PDP primary in May, Oborevwori, speaker of the Delta house of assembly, polled 590 votes to beat Edevbie, the commissioner for finance during the James Ibori administration, who polled 113 votes.

While Oborevwori is the preferred candidate of Ifeanyi Okowa, Delta governor, James Ibori, former governor, is said to be backing Edevbie.

Aggrieved by the outcome of the primary, Edevbie had filed a suit against Oborevwori and the party, citing discrepancies in Oborevwori’s certificates.

Taiwo Taiwo, judge of the federal high court in Abuja, had disqualified Oborevwori for submitting false information to INEC to back his nomination as PDP’s candidate.

Not satisfied with the high court’s verdict, Oborevwori filed an appeal.

In the judgment on Monday, the court of appeal held that the high court erred when it relied on the originating summons brought by the plaintiff.

Ige noted that the allegations Edevbie raised against Oborevwori “were deeply rooted and founded in criminality”, adding that claims of that nature ought to have been proved beyond reasonable doubt at the trial court.

The court further held that the lower court judge erred when he granted all the plaintiff’s reliefs without taking evidence of witnesses which would have included institutions that awarded certificates to Oborevwori.

“Facts were irreconcilably in conflict and could not have been resolved without oral evidence,” the appellate court held.

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“There is no scintilla of evidence on record to prove that the appellant tendered forged certificate to the INEC.”

The court of appeal further held that Edevbie’s legal action was premature as Oborevwori’s name had not been submitted to INEC by the PDP at the time he filed the suit.

Also, it was decided that the first respondent (Edevbie), throughout the entirety of his lawsuit, failed to demonstrate how the PDP had violated the Electoral Act or the 1999 Constitution, as amended, in the governorship primary election held on May 25.

“The decision of the lower court was perverse and it is accordingly set aside,” the court of appeal held.

“The appellant’s appeal is hereby allowed.”

The Cable

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  1. To God be the Glory. I call on David Edevbie to come back home so that collectively we can build the state together.

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