Wike sues Atiku, PDP, others over presidential primary

… Asks court to declare him PDP candidate

Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, has sued former vice president and the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Atiku Abubakar; his party, the Peoples Democratic Party; his Sokoto State Governor counterpart, Aminu Tambuwal and the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, over the conduct of the presidential primary of the party that was held in Abuja on May 28 and May 29, 2022.

Wike and a PDP chieftain, Newgent Ekamon, in a suit marked FHC/ABJ/CS/782/2022 are the plaintiffs. On the other hand, the PDP is listed as the first respondent while the Independent National Electoral Commission is the 2nd respondent. Tambuwal and Atiku are listed as the 3rd and 4th respondents in that order.

Atiku, at the primary, polled 371 votes to defeat Wike who got 237 and former Senate President, Bukola Saraki got 70.

The Sokoto Governor, had urged his supporters to vote for Atiku during the primary. Soon after the convention, the National Chairman of the PDP, Iyorchia Ayu, described Tambuwal as the “hero of the convention.”

Wike and his co-applicant are asking the court to determine eight issues including whether the purported transfer of Tambuwal’s votes to Atiku by the PDP was illegal and void.

They are also asking the court to determine if Tambuwal lost his claim to votes the moment he stepped down for Atiku.

Furthermore, they are asking the court to determine whether Tambuwal “having stepped down during the primaries ought to lose his votes.”

Wike and Ekamon then argued if the fore going issues are resolved in their favour, the court should grant nine other reliefs. They include a declaration that the purported transfer of Tambuwal’s votes to Atiku be invalidated. That PDP was negligent and acted in bad faith by assigning Tambuwah’s votes to Atiku at the primary.

They are also asking that the court should “cancel the transfer of votes and a corresponding order restraining the 3rd respondent (Tambuwal’s) withdrawal in the primary was done after voting had commenced.”

Wike and Ekamon asked are also asking the court to order INEC to reject or remove Atiku from “its list of candidates in the 2023 presidential election and directing the 1st respondent (PDP) to declare the 2nd applicant (Wike), a presidential aspirant in the May 28 and May 29 primary as the winner of the primary with a corresponding order directing the 1st respondent (PDP) to forward his name as the candidate to contest the presidential election in 2023.”