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Rhodes-Vivour remains authentic LP guber candidate in Lagos – Legal team

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. As party alleges plans by opposition parties to snatch its FCT seat

THE legal team of Labour Party (LP) candidate for March 18 Governorship election in Lagos State, Mr Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour, has said its client remains the party’s authentic flag-bearer in the state.

 

Mr Olagbade Benson, the Lead Counsel to Rhodes-Vivour, told newsmen on Monday in Lagos that three court cases instituted against its client’s candidacy recently had been struck out.

 

Benson, who led two other lawyers, Uchechukwu Ani and Kemi Afesojaye, in the briefing, noted that claims by the former LP gubernatorial candidate and Chairman in Lagos, Prince Ifagbemi Awamaridi, that he had a substantive case against Rhodes Vivour is false.

 

Benson said that the affidavit being brandished by Awamaridi as the true position of the court that he had been certified as an authentic Labour party candidate is fake.

 

He said the affidavit did not represent the judgements delivered by the court in the state.

 

Benson explained that there were two judgements, including that from the Federal High and Appeal Courts, affirming the candidature of Rhodes-Vivour as the bonafide standard-bearer of the party for Saturday’s election.

 

The lawyer said that the case against Rhodes-Vivour by the PDP had been thrown out by the Federal High Court for lacking merit.

 

According to him, “anyone going around parading himself as the candidate of the party, aside Rhodes-Vivour, and others alleging cases before the court on the LP candidature are misleading the public.

 

He said that the aim behind such a claim by any individual is because they are afraid of Rhodes-Vivour and believe that misleading the public, especially the electorate before the election on March 18, was the best strategy to adopt.

 

“Our attention has been drawn to an affidavit dated 5th August, 2022, and tagged Affidavit on non-withdrawal which was sent to INEC, stating that he (Awamaridi) was yet to step down from his role as Labour Party candidate.

 

“But after, Awamaridi filed a suit before the Federal High Court with No: FHC/ABJ/1463/2022, challenging the candidature of the LP candidate where he sued INEC, the party and Rhodes-Vivour.

 

“On the 8th of December, the Federal High Court considered the case and struck it out. Anyone that is interested can apply for the judgement because it is a public document.

 

“And because he felt that the judgement did not go in his favour, he headed to the Appeal court.

 

“And on February 2nd, 2023, the Appellate court terminated Awamaridi’s case and it was based on the act that it was filed out of time allotted by the law or pre-electoral matters.

 

“Also, the PDP filed a suit challenging his candidature and that matter was struck out at the Federal High Court on December 8th, 2022. And the opposition party did not pursue their claim ater the FHC struck it out,” Benson said.

Meanwhile, the  Labour Party (LP) has alleged that some opposition parties are pressurizing the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to upturn the victory of its FCT senate candidate, Ireti Kingibe in their favour.

 

Mr Peter Diugwu, the FCT LP Chairman, said this at a news conference on Tuesday in Abuja.

 

He alleged that the parties were frequenting the FCT office of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to change the result which had already been announced and certificates of return issued.

 

“We are asking INEC not to yield to their quest or to act funny by going behind to tamper with results announced.

 

“We are advising INEC to do the needful and leave the Labour Party candidates as the winners .

 

“We have confidence in the FCT INEC and we know they won’t act funny,”he said.

 

Diugwu lauded the FCT residents for coming out en mass to vote for LP candidates in the Feb. 25 presidential and National Assembly Election.

 

He said that the support from FCT residents showed that they believed in party’s dream of moving Nigeria from a consumption economy to production economy.

 

“We want to thank all residents of FCT for coming  out on Feb 25 to vote for our candidates ,even our presidential candidates won with a land slide victory in FCT.

 

“We also thank all our support groups and their conveners who stood by us to make sure this victory is achieved.

 

“Our candidate Ireti Kingibe won the senatorial seat and other LP candidates although some were rigged out,” he said.

 

Diugwu said that the LP was not in any form of alliance with other parties on the Saturday’s governorship and States Houses of Assembly elections, urging its candidates in the states to stand stronger as God would help them to win.

 

He called on the party’s supporters nationwide especially the ‘obidents’ to vote for LP from top to bottom and prove to people that the party had grassroots influence.

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