By Olusola Alatise
The Ondo State Governor and Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Governors Forum, Dr Olusegun Mimiko, has described the Tribunal judgement which nullified the election of Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State, as an embarrassment and a call for concern, even as he dropped a hint of the PDP leaders meeting soon over the judgement.
Reacting in Akure yesterday to the judgement delivered at the weekend, Dr Mimiko said there are lots of matters around the judgement that need to be tested, expressing his strong belief that the judgement will be upturned at the Appeal Court.
He said: “The Rivers State Election tribunal judgement delivered last Saturday is embarrassing.
“We have challenged the jurisdiction of the tribunal sitting in Abuja when Port Harcourt is peaceful. The Chairman of the tribunal was changed and the Supreme Court will deliver judgement on the jurisdiction case before the end of this week”.
Picking holes in the process that led to last Saturday’s judgement, Mimiko queried the rationale behind the tribunal ‘s rush to deliver its judgement when it still has till next week before its sitting date lapses.”
Maintaining that the judgement was hasty, Mimiko opined that the tribunal should have waited for the judgement of the Supreme Court on the jurisdiction of the tribunal sitting in Abuja instead of Port Harcourt.
He expressed optimism that PDP will always win elections in Rivers State being PDP’s natural zone.
“The judgement will be appealed and we are confident of a positive outcome from the Appellate Court. If election is to be conducted 100 times in Rivers State, PDP will win. Rivers State is PDP State”.
The PDP Governors Forum chairman said there was no way the tribunal judges could have studied the avalanche of written addresses and evidence adopted and delivered judgement in less than 24 hours.
“Nine written addresses were adopted by the tribunal at about 2pm on Thursday while the notice of judgement was sent on Friday. Apart from the nine written addresses of over 40 pages each, there were over 100 witnesses and over 1,000 documents presented. The judges could not have evaluated all these within 24 hours.”
Mimiko further submitted that Peoples Democratic Party leaders will meet very soon to review the judgement as he said the common people still see the judiciary as their last hope. Agenda Praise Night would be held at the Event Centre very soon, thanked all stakeholders particularly members of the state House of Assembly for keeping faith with the government to achieve the set goals and objectives of the project.
He said the dedication was necessary to ensure the centre is committed to the Hands of God before usage for any event, adding that the Centre will host engineers across the world next month for an International Conference.
In his exhortation, the state Chairman of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Bishop Joshua Ketiku, stated that a fulfilled and productive life in Christ can only be achieved through continued and consistent thanksgiving.
While dedicating the edifice, Pastor Tunde Adesida said that if it were not for God, the project would have been abandoned as he invoked the Spirit of God on the iconic building for quick completion.
Highlight of the event was the tour of the project by all dignitaries present.