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Kubor vs Dickson: Appeal Court Reserves Judgment



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*** PDP and legal team to meet this week

*** Is there any hope? Dickson Supporters ask each other

Today, Monday 27 August, 2012 Court of Appeal sitting in Port

Harcourt, Rivers State has reserved judgment for an appeal filed by

the candidate of the Change Advocacy Party (CAP)

over the July 11 verdict of the Bayelsa State Governorship Election

Petition Tribunal, Yenagoa, which declared Henry Seriake Dickson as

Governor of Bayelsa State.

The Change Advocacy Party (CAP) and its governorship candidate,

Dr.  Imoro Goodhead Kubor, who filed an appeal at the higher Court

challenging the ruling of the Justice Muhammad Ibrahim Sirajo-led


The Appeal Court sat exactly 10.00 am this morning with five (5)

Justices that presided over the matter after hearing from both parties

with their oral arguments why the matter is before the Court of


Presenting their oral argument, Counsel to Dr. Imoro Goodhead Kubor,

A.J. Owonikoko, SAN who took the floor at the first instant said the

Appellant brief of argument which he formulated four (4) issues out of

the ten grounds of appeal and implore their lordship to adopt that

brief and rely on it, praying for a favourable determination of the

matter at stake.

A.J. Owonikoko, SAN further argued that whether invalidly sponsored

candidate by a political party can rise on his stage of nomination?

That Hon. Henry Seriake Dickson was not nominated by the party. That

the right of a party to nominate is separate from the duty of the

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party to validly sponsor a candidate. Now in this case, as par the

close of nomination, Hon. Henry Seriake Dickson was not a candidate

with Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and Peoples

Democratic Party (PDP) has no candidate.

That Hon. Henry Seriake Dickson then filed an action in Abuja, less

than twenty three (23) days to the election and base on that action,

he (Dickson) claimed that he was entitled to contest while he

(Owonikoko, SAN) argued that Hon Dickson was a disqualified candidate

because his name must be emerged and must be recognize by INEC not

less than thirty (30) days to the date of the election. His nomination

must be valid in accordance with the Constitution of the Federal

Republic of Nigeria and the Electoral Act (as amended 2010), that Hon.

Henry Seriake Dickson was not qualified to be elected into office of

Governor of Bayelsa State as required by law.

He thanked God that the matter is being heard today on its merit,

because they were apprehensive and the logistics of the court system

were judges are already on vacation might have affected the court but

still managed to rose to the occasion. Asked on why the court engaged

him of several questions, he said when court engages you the Judges

has painstakingly read and appreciates the issue. So questions pose by

court is to enable them reach Justice and the conduct of the court was

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very satisfactory even the led counsel of the other side thank them

for today’s sitting.

A.J. Owonikoko, SAN said he is hopeful especially because the case of

Dangana that was recurrent in all the arguments was a decision of this

(Appeal Court) which the Supreme Court has upheld. And unfortunately

it was not available at the lower Tribunal so their Lordships didn’t

had the benefit of having it before ruling, so in our view it should

be helpful to this Honourable Court.


Meanwhile, our reliable source said the leadership of the Peoples

Democratic Party (PDP) in Bayelsa State has called for an emergency

meeting with Dickson’s legal team for the appeal court on how best

they will brainstorm for the way forward in the matter. This issue is

now a public discourse in Yenagoa the state capital and its environ as

various supporters are now asking each other of their fate especially

the political appointees.

One political observer said is like a dark day in the state capital

were people discuss on the issue without going back to their various

homes to attend domestic matters. According to him, those that were

present at the appeal court today too were confused of the level of

arguments especially Dr. Kubor’s lawer. A.J. Owonikoro, SAN still

insisted that “the law assists only the vigilant and not the


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