The Delta State Chapter of the Labour Party (LP) and its 2023 governorship candidate, Kennedy Pela has filed 3 grounds of appeal, asking the appellate court to set aside the decision of the lower court election petition Tribunal which earlier dismissed their case for premature filing.
The chairman of the 3-man panel of Justices, Justice C. H Ahuchaogu for the governorship election petition tribunal, had dismissed the petition NO:EPT/DL/GOV/01/2023 filed by LPand its governorship candidate, Pela against INEC, PDP, APC and their candidates, on the grounds that the pre-hearing notice of LP and its candidate was filed prematurely.
In the three grounds of appeal, the LP and its governorship candidate stated the tribunal judges erred in law by misconstruing the law and principles relevant to application for issuance of pre-hearing notice as in Forms T7007 and dismissing the petition.l, adding that the learned honourable tribunal misconceived the intendments of the draftsman in the provision of the Electoral Act whenit held that the petitioners had made a premature application on 19/5/2023for the issuance of pre-hearing information sheet as in Form TF 007.
They noted that the learned panel of Judges of the Governorship Election Petition Tribunal, Holden at Asaba, erred in law and misapplied paragraph 18(1) of the 1st Schedule to the Electoral Act, 2022 when they held that the said application was premature even as against the 1st, 4th and 7th Respondents.
They further argued that the tribunal misapplied the provisions of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic ofNigeria (as amended) and the Electoral Act,2022 and dismissed the petition.
They however, asked the appellate court to set aside the lower court ruling and remitte the petition back to the Governorship Election Petition Tribunal, holden at Asaba to be heard on its merits.