The Rivers State chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) insists its candidates will be represented on the ballot for the National Assembly, governorship and state House of Assembly elections.
The party noted that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) was "making moves" to recognise its candidates, and called on the commission to speed up the implementation of the court ruling on the matter.
This was contained in a statement issued on Thursday by Senibo Chris Finebone, Rivers APC Publicity Secretary, at a press conference held at the state party secretariat in Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital.
The party urged its members to participate actively in the elections scheduled for February 16, 2019, and that of March 2, 2019.
The statement read: “After a meeting of the State Working Committee of our party in the State today in which we meticulously deliberated on the recent court rulings of various courts especially the decision of the Court of Appeal sitting in Port Harcourt yesterday to further re-affirm two earlier orders that stayed the execution of the judgments of the lower court, our conclusion is that the APC and its candidates will now, most certainly, be on the ballot this Saturday. No order or judgement given since, including orders given by the Supreme Court on both jurisdiction and representation have said otherwise.
“We opted not to rely on a media circus to convey our right to be included. Unlike the many news reports that were suggesting we were dead and buried, we have since seen the orders and the Supreme Court judgement on the stay of execution which proves beyond reasonable doubt that INEC has an obligation to relist APC or risk being sanctioned for excluding us and disobeying a subsisting court order.
“We hail once again both decisions of the stay of execution, taken by the Court of Appeal recently and their reaffirmation of both yesterday. These decisions mean that nothing is stopping INEC from placing APC on the ballot. We welcome the moves by INEC to put us back on the ballot, as the alternative would have confirmed once and for all, the genuine fear that they are working for the PDP.
“We wish to state advisedly that obedience to the rule of law is the best antidote to anarchy. In the circumstances, we urge INEC to speedily implement the rule of law and return our great party to its rightful place. We are only demanding a right to compete.
“I want to once again hail the decision of the Supreme Court to refuse moves by Senator Magnus Abe and his lawyers to appeal the stays of execution. Nobody is in any doubt now that the Supreme Court’s throwing out of their appeal against our stays of execution, speaks volumes. In summary, it means that the stays still subsist. That is the clear position of the law. The stay orders, the details of the Supreme Court judgement and our formal letter to INEC are hereby attached for your perusal.
“We have passed the stage of worrying if we will be on the ballot. We must now prepare to punish those who have been trying to keep us out of the elections with our votes. With these same votes, we must give Mr. President our full support. He stood by our leader because our leader had always stood by him and if you want to keep getting what you are getting, you have to keep doing what you are doing.” Everybody must come out and vote APC to deny PDP any sight of government and help our President secure his second term in office.”