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INEC removes APC Candidate’s name from Bayelsa Elections



INEC removes Timipre Sylva from Bayelsa Governorship Election

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has taken the decision to remove the name of Timipre Sylva, the All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship candidate, from the list of candidates for the upcoming governorship election in Bayelsa State, slated for November 11.

This significant development was made evident in an updated list posted on the INEC website on a Tuesday. Notably, Joshua Maciver, who was running as Sylva’s candidate, also had his name removed from the list.

The updated list displayed a vacant column for the names of the APC candidate and his running mate, accompanied by the notation “court order.”

The revised list was formally signed by Rose Oriaran-Anthony, the Secretary to the Commission.

The background to this move dates back to a previous ruling by the Federal High Court in Abuja on October 10.

The court’s judgment led to Sylva’s disqualification from participating in the Bayelsa state governorship election on the basis that he had previously been sworn in as governor twice and had ruled for a total of five years.

Allowing him to contest again would have, according to the court’s decision, resulted in a violation of the 1999 constitution, as amended.

Specifically, he would have exceeded the constitutional limit of eight years in office as governor if he were to win the 2023 election.

Additionally, INEC’s updated list included candidates for the Imo governorship election. The list featured Uchechukwu Ishiodu as the governorship candidate and Ahumbe Chiazor as the running mate for the Peoples Redemption Party (PRP).

In explaining the necessity for the amended list, Rose Oriaran-Anthony clarified that the commission had originally published the final list of candidates for the 2023 Bayelsa State Governorship Election in line with the provisions of Section 32 of the Electoral Act, 2022, and the Timetable and Schedule of Activities for the Election.

However, INEC received a court order regarding the nomination of the APC candidate for the Bayelsa governorship election.

Oriaran-Anthony stated,

“By virtue of the provision of Section 287 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended), the Commission is bound to enforce the orders of the court on the nomination of candidates by political parties in the state.

“The Amended list of candidates in respect of the 2023 Bayelsa State governorship election is hereby amended pursuant to the orders of court served on the commission.”