Sylva writes INEC, demands withdrawal of amended list of candidates for Bayelsa election


The former minister of state for petroleum resources, Timipre Sylva, has demanded the immediate withdrawal of the amended list of candidates for the Bayelsa governorship election released by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

The commission had earlier on Wednesday omitted Sylva’s name in the amended list of candidates for the election.

This followed the October 9 ruling by the Federal High Court, Abuja, which disqualified the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate from the election.

Justice Donatus Okorowo, who delivered the verdict in a suit filed by an APC member in the state, eme Kolomo, held that Sylva who had been sworn in twice and ruled for five years as governor of the state would breach the 1999 Constitution if allowed to contest again.

The APC candidate had since appealed the ruling at the Court of Appeal, Abuja.

In a letter dated October 25, written by his lawyer, Ahmed Raji (SAN) and addressed to the INEC Chairman, Mahmoud Yakubu, the former governor described the omission of his name from the amended list of candidates for the election as prejudicial.

The letter read: “Dear sir, you will recall that the judgment in issue, that arose from the above suit was delivered on the 9th of October, 2023, and our client, being an ardent and firm believer in the efficacy of the judiciary and the rule of law, immediately filed an appeal within 24 hours of the judgment, on the 10th October, 2023.

READ ALSO: Sylva missing as INEC releases amended list of candidates for Bayelsa governorship poll

“In addition to the notice of appeal, our client expeditiously compiled the record of appeal and transmitted same in less than 10 days.

“The appeal was successfully entered on the 18th October 2023, with Appeal No. CA/ABJ/CS/1060/2023.

“The above being the case, the commission, as a respected arbiter and law-abiding institution, is expected to respectfully wait for the outcome of the appeal, before taking any step that may be prejudicial to any of the parties, particularly, our client.

“This is in view of the fact that the parties that went to court are not candidates in the forthcoming election, unlike our client. In other words, they do not have anything to lose, rather, they are fighting proxy battles to deny our client and his party the opportunity to participate in the forthcoming election.

“We know that the Commission has always been consistent in a matter like this, to wait until the entire appellate process and proceedings are completed, one way or the other.”

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