Updates: Crowd, Noise Force Supreme Court To Suspend Hearing Of Governorship Appeals

The Supreme Court on Monday in Abuja suspended the hearing of the governorship appeals from six states of the Federation.

The Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Tanko Muhammad, gave the order following the inability of the security operatives to control the crowd and the noise level in the court.

Recall that the Supreme Court will today deliver judgement on the appeals filed against the elections of Governor Emeka Ihedioha of Imo State, his Kano State counterpart, Abdullahi Ganduje, and Governor Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto State after the rerun on March 23, 2019.

They were declared the winners of the governorship polls by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

While both Ihedioha and Tambuwal were elected on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Ganduje secured his victory through the All Progressives Congress (APC).

Ahead of the judgement, members of the PDP in Imo are upbeat that the apex court would uphold Ihedioha’s victory while those of the APC and the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) are hopeful that they would carry the day.

After hearing the appeals against Tambuwal and Ganduje, the court may likely deliver judgement as it has been the tradition in previous cases heard on some state governors that had been determined by the court.

Shortly after the Kano governorship election, the PDP candidate, Abba Kabir-Yusuf, challenged the victory of Ganduje in the poll.

In their judgment, the three-man panel led by the chairman, Justice Halima Shamaki, upheld Ganduje as the duly elected governor and held that PDP failed to prove all the allegations against him.

Justice Shamaki said: “It is only when a petitioner proves his case before the tribunal that he will have a case, the petitioners failed to prove the exact number of valid votes in each polling unit.”

In a unanimous judgment, the tribunal struck out some paragraphs of the petition because they were just speculations and held that the petitioners failed to give the number of votes for the March 9 election by tendering certified true copies of result sheets.

“Some local government area (LGA) results like Wudil, Magwan, Nasarawa and Gama ward presented were not stamped, apart from that they were not true certified copies,” she added.

The Court of Appeal therefore upheld the decision of the tribunal and dismissed the appeal of Yusuf.

Not satisfied with the judgement, he approached the apex court to set it aside.

In November 2019, the Appeal Court sitting in Sokoto upheld the election of Tambuwal as duly elected governor of the state.

The four-man panel in a unanimous decision upheld Tambuwal’s election after dismissing the appeal filed by the appellant and governorship candidate of the APC, Alhaji Ahmed Aliyu for lacking in merit.

Delivering the judgement, Justice Hussein Mukhtar, held that the verdict of the lower tribunal was in order that the petitioners failed to establish their claims to non-compliance with the Electoral Act and the issue of over voting.

Consequently, Aliyu challenged the tribunal judgment that affirmed the election of Tambuwal.

The governorship election which held on March 9 was declared inconclusive following the cancellation of 75, 403 votes which were higher than the 3,413 vote margin between the leading candidates.

The re-run was then conducted on March 23, which led to the victory of Tambuwal who won with a slim margin of 342 votes.

Not satisfied with the verdict, the APC and its candidate filed an appeal at the apex court which it asked to set aside the Appeal Court judgement.

Details later….


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Victor Akande

Victor Akande, a blogger by profession for the past 7 years. He studied Mathematics at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka Contact: +2348053316946 Twitter: @Newsflash2471

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