Delta LG polls: Court fixes Feb.15 for hearing on relisting of parties

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Electoral commission officers count votes at Shagari Health Unit polling station in Yola, Adamawa State on February 23, 2019 after the polls were closed during the day of the General elections. - Nigeria began counting votes in presidential elections, even as many people had yet to even cast their ballot because of delays in the opening of polling units and problems with staffing and technology. Nigeria's Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) last week announced a one-week delay to the election, just hours before it was due to get under way. The presidential contest will see incumbent Muhammadu Buhari (APC) seek to win a second four-year term against former vice president Atiku Abubakar (PDP). (Photo by CRISTINA ALDEHUELA / AFP) (Photo credit should read CRISTINA ALDEHUELA/AFP/Getty Images)

By Carol V. Utulu

Asaba, Jan. 30. 2021 The Federal High Court, Asaba, has fixed Feb.15 for hearing on the suit by a coalition of 10 political parties against INEC and the Delta State Independent Electoral Commission (DSEIC).

The parties are asking the court to compel the Independent National Electoral Commission(INEC) to relist them as registered political parties, ahead of the March 6 Local Government polls in Delta.

Naija247news recalls that the plaintiffs were among the over 60 political parties that were deregistered by INEC on Feb. 6, 2020.

The affected parties later took INEC to the Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja, which in August 2020 nulified the deregistration of the political parties.

Consequently, the Change Advocacy Party (CAP), Alliance of Social Democrats (ASD), Advance Congress of Democrats (ACD) and others in Delta, filed the suit at the Federal High Court Asaba.

They are seeking a court order compelling the respondents to relist them in the ballot papers for the March 6 council polls in the state, in accordance with the appeal court judgement.

At the hearing of the suit on Thursday, counsel to the plaintiffs, Mr Kelechi Nnadi, appealed for more time to enable his clients to study and respond to the counter-affidavit served on them by the defendants.

In his ruling, Justice T.B. Adegoke granted the application of the plaintiffs’ counsel and adjourned hearing on the matter till Feb. 15.

In an interview shortly after the court session, the state Chairman of CAP, Mr. Lucky Dikadi, told journalists that the parties were satisfied with the adjournment.

“We are okay with the adjournment. The defendants served us their counter affidavit very late yesterday. So, our counsel applied for time to enable us to study it and respond,” Dikadi said.

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