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Governorship Review: Double Setback For Lyon, APC At Supreme Court

. . . Loses Appeal


. . . To Pay N60 Million Fine

It was a double setback for the All Progressives Congress (APC), its Bayelsa State ill-fated governor-elect- David Lyon and his deputy governor-elect, Mr. Biobarakuma Degi-Eremienyo, at the Supreme Court on Wednesday.

The apex court, apart from upholding its earlier decision that sacked Mr. Lyon and his deputy governor-elect and declaring Mr. Douye Diri of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as the bona fide governor of the state, slapped a N60 million fine against the party and the candidate for challenging the earlier judgment of the Supreme Court.

In a lead judgment by Justice Amina Augie on Wednesday, the court held that the grounds for review of the application lacked merit.


“The decision of this court is final. It is final forever and no force on earth can force this court to change its decision on Bayelsa,” she declared.


The judge described the suit filed on behalf of the APC, Lyon and his deputy governor-elect, Mr. Biobarakuma Degi-Eremienyo, as “highly vexatious, frivolous and gross abuse of the judicial process.”
The court held that the applications were aimed at “desecrating the sanctity of the court” adding that it was an invitation for the Supreme Court to sit on appeal over its final judgment.

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“I feel like shedding tears that senior counsel in this case would ever bring this kind of frivolous applications during my life time,” she said.


Consequently, Justice Augie ordered the applicants Lyon, Degi-Eremienyo and APC to pay the sum of N10 million to each of the three respondents as fine.


The respondents are Diri, his deputy, Mr. Lawrence Ewhruojakpo and the PDP
She ordered that the cost should be paid by respective counsel for the applicants for bringing such frivolous applications on behalf of their clients.


Earlier, counsel for Lyon, Mr. Afe Babalola, had faulted the decision of the apex court for voiding the election of the party on the grounds that cause of action was not brought into the picture.


While conceding that the apex court cannot review its decision, he however, maintained that it can set aside its own judgment.


Babalola stressed that the judgment was a nullity as it was in breach of his applicant’s right to fair hearing, adding that it was adequate grounds for the decision to be set aside.


Also, counsel for the APC, Mr. Wole Olanipekun, said the Supreme Court lacked jurisdiction to hear the matter in the first instance.

He added that the judgment of February 13, 2020 was a human error.
However, PDP’s counsel, Mr. Tayo Oyetibo, in his argument, maintained that the Supreme Court remained the highest court in the land.


He submitted that the application of Lyon and the APC was a call to violate the Nigerian Constitution.

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