The Federal High Court in Abuja on Tuesday disqualified the Bayelsa State deputy governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress, Biobarakuma Degi-Eremienyo, from participating in the November 16, 2019 governorship election in the state, The Punch report.
Justice Inyang Ekwo ordered Degi-Eremienyo’s disqualification on the grounds that he presented false information about his educational qualifications in his Form CF001 submitted to the Independent National Electoral Commission as a candidate for the 2019 poll.
He ruled that the act amounted to giving false information in violation of Section 31(5) and (6) of the 2010 Electoral Act.
The suit marked FHC/ABJ/CS/1101/2019 was instituted on September 18, 2019 by the Peoples Democratic Party, its governorship candidate in Bayelsa State, Douye Diri, and Lawrence Ewhruojakpo.
The APC, its governorship candidate in Bayelsa State, Lyon Pereworimin, Degi-Eremienyo, and INEC were joined as defendants.
Upholding the PDP’s case in his judgment on Tuesday, Justice Ekwo held that Degi-Eremienyo presented documents of academic qualifications with various variations of names different from the name that appeared on his Form CF001.
The names on the different documents attached to his Form CF001 were said to be, Biobarakum Degi-Eremienyo, Degi Biobaragha, Degi Biobarakuma, Adegi Biobakunmo, and Degi-Eremienyo Wangagha.
Justice Ekwo ruled, “I hold that the information given by the 3rd defendant on Form CF.001 that the documents thereto attached as his have not by any iota of credible evidence been so established.
“The information is false in all material particular as none of the said documents have any nexus with the name of the 3rd defendant (Degi-Eremienyo) on the said Form CF001….
“An order is hereby made disqualifying the 3rd defendant as the deputy governorship candidate of the 1st defendant (the APC) in the November 16, 2019 Bayelsa State governorship election by reason of the 3rd defendant presenting false information to the 2nd defendant (INEC) in support of his nomination contrary to section 31(5) and (6) of the 2010 Electoral Act (as amended).”
Meanwhile, the National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, Uche Secondus, on Tuesday, called on INEC to disqualify Degi-Eremienyo by invoking the relevant sections of the constitution and the Electoral Act.
Secondus, in a statement by his media aide, Ike Abonyi, also argued that a governorship candidate without a deputy “cannot stand on one leg and be walking into an election.”
According to him, what the court ruling meant was that the APC had no validly nominated candidate for the November 16 governorship election.
The PDP chairman urged INEC to do the needful by disqualifying the APC candidate in the race, adding that he could not stand alone or be replaced “at this time.”