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Bayelsa Election: Court Dismisses Suit Seeking Douye Diri’s Disqualification




#BayelsaDecides: Diri Wins His Polling Unit For PDP
Bayelsa State Governor, Douye Diri

The Federal High Court in Abuja has thrown out a case aiming to disqualify Governor Douye Diri of Bayelsa State and his deputy, Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo.

The court judge, Justice Emeka Nwite, ruled that the case lacked substance, as the plaintiff failed to provide sufficient evidence to support the allegations of certificate forgery against Ewhrudjakpo.

Nwite also ordered the plaintiff to pay a fine of ₦500,000 to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), the 3rd defendant in the case.

It could be recalled that a new lawsuit was initiated by a Bayelsa resident named Mrs Blessing Clement Azibanagbal, just nine days before the November 11, 2023, Bayelsa governorship election. The case marked FHC/ABJ/CS/1448/23, was filed by Mrs Azibanagbal’s lawyer, Ifeanyi Nsowu.


In the affidavit supporting the originating summons, Yenle Istifanus, a litigation secretary at Compendium Chambers, stated that she had factual knowledge that Azibanagbal, a citizen of Nigeria from Bayelsa, had the legal right (locus standi) to initiate the legal action.

The originating summons was officially dated October 26, 2023, and filed on October 30, 2023.

Diri, Ewhrudjakpo, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) were listed as the first to fourth defendants.


The lawsuit requested a mandatory injunction, instructing INEC to remove the names of Diri and Ewhrudjakpo as PDP’s candidates in the upcoming November election.

Furthermore, it sought a perpetual injunction, preventing INEC, its agents, privies, or anyone else from publishing their names as party standard bearers in the forthcoming election in Bayelsa.

In response, Diri and his deputy submitted their counter affidavit to contest the application.


Justice Nwite, in delivering the judgment on Monday, noted that the plaintiff’s amended originating summons included various documents, such as Exhibits I, which contained a deed poll for the correct arrangement of Ewhrudjakpo’s name.

The judge said: “Fair enough, it is the documents exhibited by the plaintiff to prove her case that the 2nd defendant (Ewhrudjakpo)’s certificates have different names. Hence, he is not qualified on the ground of presentation of false information.”

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