A cross section of the River’s people reacted to the nullification of office of Gov. Nyesom Wike by the Election Petitions Tribunal on Sunday.
Mixed feelings was expressed concerning the verdict of the court over the election. While some see the judgement as a welcome development, others view it as a bad omen.
Mr Ben Orlu, a resident of Port Harcourt, told News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that the judgement was fair and unbiased.
He said that the tribunal’s judgement was an indication of a future with credible elections in the state.
He, however, said that honest residents of the state did not see the judgement of the tribunal as an unexpected one in view of what transpired during the governorship election.
Another resident, Mr Lawrence Chinda, described the judgement as biased and unfair.
He said that his opinion was based on his conviction that the governorship election in the state actually held.
Chinda described Wike’s victory in the governorship election as a demonstration of Rivers state’s support for PDP.
He expressed confidence that Wike would win the fresh governorship election that would be organised within the next 90 days as ordered by the tribunal.
According to him, Wike’s achievements in less than 100 days of his being in office, is a clear indication that he is the man of the people.
In her reaction, Mrs Joy Terry, another resident of Port Hacourt, said that the judgement would offer some of the voters who missed out in the last election the opportunity to exercise their voting rights.
Terry, therefore, advised Rivers people to decide their future wisely by voting the right candidate in the fresh election.
She, however, acknowledged that Wike had the right to seek redress in the appeal court and the supreme court.
A school teacher, Mrs Comfort Brown, said that the nullification of Wike’s election by the tribunal was not in the interest of the state because “Wike has started on a positive note.
“We believe he should be given the chance to develop the state and move it forward. The judgement will certainly distract his administration because he will spend time and energy fighting to reverse it at higher courts.”
It will be recalled that the Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal for Rivers on Saturday nullified the election of the Rivers governor for non-compliance with the provisions of the Electoral Act.
The tribunal, sitting in Abuja, ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission to conduct fresh governorship election in the state within 90 days.
The three-member tribunal, presided over by Justice Suleiman Ambursa, gave the orders in its judgment following a petition filed against the election of Wike by the All Progressives Congress (APC) and its candidate in the April 11 election in the state, Dr Dakuku Peterside.