Appeal Court Affirms Removal of PDP Lawmaker: Fifth Blow to Party Amidst Primary Controversies

The Court of Appeal in Abuja has upheld the dismissal of Hon. Rimvjat Nanbol from the People’s Democratic Party as the Langtang Central State Constituency lawmaker. The National and State Houses of Assembly Election Petition Tribunal had earlier removed Nanbol in September, declaring Hon. Daniel Ninbol Listic of the Labour Party as the rightful winner.

Despite Nanbol seeking redress at the appeal court, a three-man panel, led by Justice Okong Abang, unanimously affirmed the Tribunal’s decision. They concurred that the Tribunal rightly had jurisdiction over the internal affairs of a political party, especially regarding non-qualification and sponsorship issues.

Justice Abang supported the Tribunal’s finding that the PDP’s structure collapsed after a Plateau State High Court judgment declared the party’s failure to conduct a valid primary involving delegates from all 17 LGAs of the state.

Expressing his opinion, Justice Abang emphasized that, without court compliance, the election lacked a valid PDP presence. He criticized the party for disregarding a court order, stating it was a “joke taken too far” for a political party to do so.

Moreover, Justice Abang clarified that a court has the authority to address matters concerning a political party, particularly if the party disobeys an existing court order. The appeal was deemed lacking in merit and dismissed, affirming the Tribunal’s judgment. Consequently, the Labour Party candidate maintains representation for the Constituency in the Plateau House of Assembly.

This development marks the fifth instance where PDP representatives have been removed by the appeal court due to invalidated party primaries.