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Appeal Court reserves ruling in Kano guber dispute

The Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja has reserved judgment in the appeal filed by Governor Abba Kabir Yusuf challenging his removal by the Kano…

The Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja has reserved judgment in the appeal filed by Governor Abba Kabir Yusuf challenging his removal by the Kano Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal.

A three-man panel of judges led by Justice Oluyemi Akintan Osadebay had sacked Yusuf of the New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP) on September 20 by declaring 165,663 of his votes invalid because they were not signed or stamped by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

The governor’s votes were then reduced to 853,939 while that of the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate in the election, Nasir Yusuf Gawuna (890,705 votes) remained.

Yusuf had rejected the tribunal verdict, which he described as “unfair” and “a miscarriage of justice”, and headed to the appellate court.

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At the court on Monday, Wole Olanipekun, (SAN), lead counsel for Yusuf, said this is the first time in history that a tribunal will annul an election over non-signing of the back of ballot papers.

But Akin Olujimi (SAN), counsel for APC, countered him saying the appellate court had stated emphatically in its past rulings that the non-signing of ballots amounted to electoral malpractice.

The appeal court panel chaired by Justice Moore Adumein subsequently reserved judgment, saying a date would be communicated to the parties.

In a related development, a panel of the Court of Appeal has reinstated Yusuf Umar Datti of the NNPP as the authentic representative of Kura/Madobi/Garun Malam Federal Constituency of Kano State.

The court reversed the ruling of the election petition tribunal, which had earlier sacked Datti and declared Musa Iliyasu of the APC as the winner of the election.

The three-member panel of the appellate court led by Justice Tunde Oyebamiji Awotoye, held that Datti’s appeal against the tribunal judgment had merit and allowed it. 

Reacting, Kwankwaso said he has submitted the result to God whose wish and will is above everybody.

He said his prayers are now with the APC governorship candidate in the state to secure victory at the appellate court.

 

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