Federal High Court sitting in Port Harcourt, has adjourned till August 31, 2022, to hear the separate suits by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) against the Accord, Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and 14 others.
Presiding judge, Justice Dalyop Pam, who announced the adjournment date on Friday, after the parties in the matters made their submissions on their filed applications and counter affidavits in court, also declared a definite hearing on the matter in the next adjourned date.
The PDP filed the suits against INEC, Accord, SDP and Labour Party, including the INEC and the parties’ candidates challenging the credibility of their primaries.
Speaking with journalists outside the courtroom, counsel for Accord, Abdulameed Mohammed, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, explained that his client was served with the processes, adding that the plaintiff filed the action out of time.
According to Mohammed, “They don’t have any standing in court because a political party cannot challenge other political party primaries guided by different constitution.
“Subsequently we filed a motion to strike out the name of Accord because they were sued as Accord Party. That party does not exist in Nigeria, so we are saying that the party should be struck out from the suit”.
Counsel for PDP, Dike Udenna, who also spoke with newsmen, explained among others, “The one in respect of Accord political party, the court was informed that they are disputing their own existence. They filed an application before the court to say their name is Accord Party, that there is no political party known as Accord Party. Therefore the name of Accord Party should be struck out of the case.
“We opposed it. We know them as Accord Party and all the papers from INEC bears Accord Party as their name. So, we are opposing them and have filed application.
“The one for Social Democratic Party, Femi Falana SAN entered appearance for the defendants and us still within the same time having just been served with the originating processes awhile, he still have about two days and he asked for an adjournment to enable him formally file his processes.
“The one for Labour Party, they still have about two days. So it was also adjourned to August 31, to enable them file all their papers. The matters are now for hearing”.
Meanwhile, though not a party in the suit but in solidarity with his party in the court, Chief Dumo Lulu-Briggs, Governorship Candidate of Accord in Rivers State, expressed that “Rivers people should be allowed to choose their political leaders and not to impose candidates on them”.