By Nwakanma OWHONDAH, Port Harcourt
TENSION IN Rivers State as Supreme court grants abridgement of time to Elvis Chinda, a chieftain of the ruling party in the state Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.
The Supreme Court on Tuesday granted the prayer of Mr. Elvis Chinda for abridgement of time in the suit seeking an order disqualifying Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State from contesting the 2019 governorship election in the state.
A five-man panel of Supreme Court Justices led by the Acting Chief Justice of Nigeria, Tanko Muhammad granted the abridgement as filed by Chinda’s lawyer, William Nwobodo, to reply to a response by counsel to Wike, Ferdinand Orbih, SAN.
Asking court to dismissed the pre-election suit brought by Chinda, a Peoples Democratic Party member in Rivers, Chinda alleged that the birth certificate of Wike attached to the Form CF001 he submitted to the Independent National Electoral Commission on November 2, 2018, for clearance to participate in the 2019 general election, was forged.
The trial court dismissed the case for being filed out of time.
Dissatisfied, Chinda approached the Court of Appeal, Abuja presided over by Justice Stephen Adah where Wike had in a preliminary objection urged the court to strike out the case for want of jurisdiction.
Wike also prayed the court not to grant Chinda leave to amend his brief, having wrongly titled the brief: “’In the Federal High Court’, instead of , “In the Court of Appeal”.
However, Wike approached the Supreme Court, in his motion saying the Appeal court erred in granting the leave sought by Chinda.
Judgment has been reserved for July 19, 2019