NIGER Delta Peace and Justice Movement, a socio-cultural organisation, on Wednesday, October 19, berated Timipre Sylva, governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress, APC, in the last election in Bayelsa State, accusing him of playing games with the judiciary.
The group said Sylva was playing politics with the judiciary, begging with the Election Petition Tribunal, Court of Appeal and now the Supreme Court in his election petition.
The group in a statement by Stephen Ebibofa, its general secretary, and obtained by journalists in Abuja, claimed that Sylva was hell-bent on intimidating and blackmailing the judiciary using the presidency to delay proceedings at the apex court even when all parties have already accepted service and filed their respective papers.
He said: “Having lost the election woefully in seven out of eight local government areas in the state, followed by his humiliating defeat at the election petition tribunal and Court of Appeal where his petition was accordingly dismissed in a unanimous decision, Sylva has filed a motion to delay proceedings after both parties have already filed their papers”.
According to him, the decisions at both the Election Petition Tribunal and the Court of Appeal had vindicated the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP and Governor Henry Seriake Dickson, its candidate, saying that “truth is sacred” and as such Sylva was only resorting to delay in order to intimidate and manipulate the judiciary.
Ebibofa said perhaps faced with a possible ban from contesting future governorship election as contained in Dickson’s cross appeal before the Supreme Court, Sylva rushed to the apex court to file a motion it regarded as an attempt to delay proceedings.
He accused Sylva and his supporters of boasting that with the appointment and resumption of a new chief justice of Nigeria, the Presidency, had been instructed to nullify the election which brought Dickson to a second term and to order a fresh election in Bayelsa using most of the newly appointed members of the Supreme Court.
A number of the newly appointed members are said to be members of the panel pencil down to preside over the case.
Ebibofa said: “Sylva is causing delay to avoid the hearing of the case, a case he first brought before the Supreme Court. It is instructive for all patriots to note that the likes of Sylva are a threat to our democracy and judiciary. Obviously, he has no respect for institutions of state, believing that any institution can be bought or rubbished as he’s bragging and boasting all over and dropping the name of President Muhammadu Buhari.
“But we are calling on the Supreme Court not to fall for his dangerous antics. Sylva believes that he can use the APC-led Federal Government to harass and intimidate the judiciary but as a group, we believe that such negative action will further drag the judiciary in the mud. And in spite of Sylva’s bragging to corrupt the judiciary, we are confident that the judiciary as a pillar of justice will once again acquit itself creditably”.
According to him, the whole world is watching to see how Sylva could ever hope to manipulate the case, when both the Governorship Election Petition Tribunal and Court of Appeal had in deference to the law and facts of the case unanimously dismissed the case.
“Hence it is clear that Sylva and the APC have no case”, he stated.
— Oct 19, 2016 @ 17:50 GMT