Court okays suit seeking to disqualify Wike over alleged certificate forgery

Court okays suit seeking to disqualify Wike over alleged certificate forgery

- A lawsuit by one Elvis Chinda has been filed against Governor Nyesom Wike and sent to a Federal High Court in Abuja

- The suit marked FHC / ABJ / CS /1430/3018 is alleging that the birth certificate Wike presented to INEC for clearance to participate in the 2019 governorship poll was forged

- Chinda is asking the court to disqualify the governor from contesting in the forthcoming election

A Federal High Court in Abuja has accepted a lawsuit filed against Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers state, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) by one Elvis Chinda.

The suit marked FHC / ABJ / CS /1430/3018 is claiming that the birth certificate of Governor Wike was forged and as such, he should be disqualified from contesting in the March 2, 2019 gubernatorial poll, Vanguard reports.

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According to the court, the hearing will take place on Wednesday, February 6. This is as Justice Inyang Ekwo has directed the service of hearing notice on INEC, Wike and PDP, who were listed as defendants.

Chinda alleged that the birth certificate Wike submitted to INEC on November 2, 2018, for clearance to participate in the 2019 governorship poll was forged.

He told the court that the certificate titled “Statutory Declaration of Age”, attached to Wike’s Form C.F.001, and said to be deposed to on October 3, 1986, by one Collins Nyeme Wike had claimed that the governor was at the time of deposition, a native of Rumuepirikom in Obio/Akpor Local government area of Rivers.

Chinda said: “As at 3rd October 1986, there was no local Government Area known as Obio /Akpor Local Government Area in existence in Rivers State.

“As at 1986, Rumuepirikom was not in Obio /Akpor Local Government Area of Rivers State , but in Port Harcourt Local Government Area of Rivers State being the parent LGA from where Obio /Akpor Local Government Area was carved out.”

He argued that the area was created in 1989 by Decree No 12 of 1989, two years after the alleged forgery was carried out

Chinda also told the court “That the certificate of birth ( Statutory Declaration of Age) was purported sworn to and issued at the High/Magistrate’s Court Registry, Port Harcourt but allegedly bears stamp of the Judiciary Probate Registry ,Port Harcourt.

“There was no Court Registry, whether in 1986 or afterward known as High/Magistrate Court Registry Port Harcourt. No such Registry existed or exists any where in Port Harcourt or Rivers State”.

He alleged that Wike, through the forged document deceived INEC to believe that he had a genuine birth certificate that confirmed his alleged date of birth given as 13th March, 1963.

The plaintiff alleged that Wike presented the birth certificate to effect consistency in his lies right from 1998, adding that the governor “began in 1989, when Wike expressed desire to contest for the local chairmanship of Obio/ Akpor Local Government Area Council election in Rivers State which INEC had fixed 35 years age for eligibility.

“Wike was 30 years of age then and ineligible for that election. In order to qualify for that election, he forged the Certificate of birth now in contention. He has used it in subsequent elections.”

The plaintiff strongly maintained that electoral body “is not in a position legally to disqualify Wike from contesting the governorship election except the court gave an order disqualifying him for the breach of Section 182 (1) (j) of the Constitution of Federal Republic of Nigeria”.

Based on the aforesaid, he is praying the court to ascertain “Whether the certificate of Birth titled Statutory Declaration of Age deposed to by one Collins Nyeme Wike purportedly sworn to on 3rd October 1986 at the High/ Court Magistrate’s Court Registry, Port Harcourt lied about/against itself and contained falsehoods.

“Whether by the combined provisions of section 182(1)(i ) and 1 (1) & (2)of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended), the 2nd defendant ought to be disqualified and declared ineligible to contest the 2019 governorship election in Rivers state made pursuant to the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended).

Chinda said that he is conscious of the fact that"the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria disqualified any person seeking election into the office of the Governor, who presented a forged certificate to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).”

Moreover, he seeks “A declaration that the Certificate of Birth titled Statutory Declaration of Age deposed to by one Collins Nyeme Wike purportedly sworn to on 3rd October 1986 at the High/ Court Magistrate’s Court Registry, Port Harcourt and presented by (Gov Wike)the 2nd Defendant to (INEC) the 1st Defendant on the 25th December 2014 for the purpose of the 2015 General Governorship Election in Rivers State was forged.

“A declaration that, the information contained in the Affidavit Form C.F. 001 deposed to by 2nd Defendant on the 29th October 2018 and presented to the (INEC)1st Defendant on the 2nd November, 2018 for the purpose of the 2019 Governorship Election in Rivers State was false.

“A declaration that by the provisions of section 182(1)(i) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended)/,(Wike) the 2nd defendant is not qualified or eligible to contest and participate in the 2019 Governorship election in Rivers State or any other such election, having presented a forged certificate to (INEC) the 1st defendant.

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“An order of the Court directing the disqualification of (Wike) the 2nd defendant from contesting or holding out himself for the 2019 General Governorship election in River State or any other elections made pursuant to the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria , 1999, (as amended) having presented a forged certificate to the 1st defendant.

“An order of perpetual injunction restraining INEC, the 1st defendant from receiving or accepting from (PDP),the 3rd defendant or any other person any nomination of the 2nd defendant, from processing such nomination, or from presenting Wike the 2nd defendant on ballot, in respect of the 2019 Governorship Election or any other elections made pursuant to the Constitution of the federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended)."

Meanwhile, Legit.ng reported that APC candidates in Rivers state were on Thursday, January 17, mocked by Wike following their exclusion from the candidates’ list released by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

Wike at a rally in Eleme said the exclusion of APC candidates would allow candidates of the PDP in the state to run unopposed.

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Source: Legit

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