ACN Challenges Conduct Of LG Poll In Rivers Okafor Ofiebor/Port Harcourt

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The Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) in Rivers State has instituted a legal suit challenging plan by the Rivers State Independent Electoral Commission (RSIEC) to conduct local council elections in 21 of the 23 Local Government Areas of the state today, Saturday, 21 May 2011.

 

In an originating summons filed in the Rivers State judiciary, the Claimant (ACN), pursuant to Order 3 Rules 6-8 of the Rules of the High Court (RHC) 2007 and Section 6 (6) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999, seeks to determine whether the provisions of the Electoral Act 2010 with respect to timing and extent of notice of poll is applicable to regulate procedure for the conduct of election to the local government council, and holds this in the affirmative.

 

The ACN also seeks to determine whether the provision of Section 20 of the Rivers State Independent Electoral Commission Law 2001, as amended, is unlawful, unconstitutional and void by reason of inconsistency with the provisions of Section 30 of the Electoral Act.

 

The party says any enactment in the RSIEC Law, especially Section 20 which is inconsistent with Section 30 of the Electoral Act with respect to timing and extent of notice to be given for the conduct of Saturday’s election is to that extent null, void and of no effect whatsoever.

 

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The is contending that the action calls for a determination of the respective powers of the national and state assemblies with respect to procedure for conduct of local government election.

 

In his reaction, Sam Woka, the Director of Publicity of RSIEC said that the commission is not aware of the suit as it has not been served.

 

“RSIEC expresses surprise that the same party that had submitted the names of its candidates that had been screened for the election is claiming that it had gone to court to stop the election. As far we are concerned, we have met the necessary requirement under the law to conduct the election.

 

“As I speak with you materials have been move to various local governments for the election.”

 

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