Affirm My Election Victory – Sokoto Gov Aliyu Appeals To Supreme

From Lateef Taiwo

Governor Ahmad Aliyu of Sokoto State has asked the Supreme Court to affirm his March 18 election victory and out rightly dismiss the appeal filed by the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, and its governorship candidate, Sa’adu Umar against him.

This was before the five-member panel of Justices led by Justice Kudirat Kekere-Ekun reserved judgment in the matter after taking arguments from parties in the suit.
The apex court announced that judgment delivery date would be communicated to parties involved.

Meanwhile, the governor’s lawyer Wole Olanipekun SAN, had argued that the Sokoto State Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal and the Court of Appeal were completely right in their findings, conclusions and dismissal of the petition for lack of merit.

He insisted that the petition instituted against the governor by the two appellants is devoid of merit and substance.

Olanipekun held that none of the allegations raised against the election of his client was established as required by law, thereby making the appeal liable to dismissal.

The position of Olanipekun was adopted by the All Progressives Congress, APC, and the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, in asking for dismissal of the appeal.
However, the appellants, PDP and Umar, pleaded with the court to find merit in the appeal and set aside the findings and decisions of the Court of Appeal and the Tribunal which had last year dismissed their petition.

Lead counsel to the appellants, Sunday Ibrahim Ameh SAN, submitted that the case of his clients was meritorious and should be allowed.

Specifically, PDP and Umar prayed the Supreme Court to declare them as the lawful winners of the March 18, 2023 gubernatorial election and not APC and Aliyu as announced by INEC.

Recall that the Court of Appeal in Abuja had on November 27 last year affirmed the election of Ahmad Aliyu as Governor of Sokoto State.

A three-member panel of the appellate court dismissed the appeal filed by PDP and its governorship candidate, Saidu Umar, challenging Aliyu’s victory in the poll.

The panel unanimously held that it found no reason to disturb the verdict of the tribunal that upheld the governor’s victory.

Aliyu, the candidate of the APC, was declared the winner of the governorship election with 453,661 votes to defeat Umar who secured 404,632 votes.

But Umar alleged that the governor and his deputy Idris Gobir, forged the certificates they presented to INEC to qualify for the election.
Meanwhile, the election Petition Tribunal, led by Justice Haruna Msheila, had, in a unanimous judgment delivered on September 30, dismissed the petition of PDP and its governorship candidate stating that the petitioners failed to prove the six grounds formulated in their joint petition.


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