EAST Honiara MP Douglas Ete, MP for West Kwara’ae Sam Iduri and West Kwaio MP Titus Fika have retained their seats following the dismissal of their petition cases in the High Court.
Deputy Chief Justice Francis Mwanesalua had dismissed all allegations against Ete yesterday morning after the petitioner decided to withdraw the petition.
Ete is facing eight grounds of bribery, one of cross-border and another of transportation of cross-border voters.
This matter was listed for trial from 23 to 30 March.
The trial, however, did not proceed as the judge was engaged in other petition cases.
Ete also filed submission for withdrawal and over the weekend, the petitioner decided to withdraw the petition.
This resulted in the withdrawal of the petition yesterday.
Petitioner Lesley Lazarus, an elector has lodged the petition against Ete.
This was after Ete won last year’s National General Election with 5,710 votes in East Honiara Constituency.
Private lawyer Wayne Ghemu represented Ete while the petitioner was represented by private lawyer James Apaniai.
Also yesterday afternoon, Judge Maelyn Bird dismissed two allegations of bribery against Iduri after a trial.
Ms. Bird in her judgment yesterday concluded that the petitioner’s allegation of the two election briberies was not proved and therefore dismissed.
“Mr. Sam Iduri is the duly elected Member of Parliament for West Kwara’ae Constituency,” Ms. Bird said.
“Cost against the petitioner,” she added.
The petitioner Alfred Tuasulia a runner up in last year’s election lost by 388 votes to Iduri.
Iduri polled a total of 1,996 votes.
Iduri was represented by private lawyer Gabriel Suri while Tuasulia was represented by another private lawyer David Lidimani.
West Kwaio MP Fika had also had his case dismissed after High Court judge Leonard Maina dismissed all allegations against him after a trial last week.
This was due to insufficient evidence.
The allegations are one of bribery and two of undue influence.
Following Fika’s win in last year’s election with 1, 697 votes, his rival John Daufanamae lodged the petition.
Daufanamae was the runner up.
Fika was represented by L & L Lawyers.
By ASSUMPTA BUCHANAN