Senate President Ahmad Lawan has hailed the Supreme Court judgement, which recognised him as the authentic candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) for Yobe North Senatorial District in this month’s election.
The apex court, in a judgment on Monday, sacked Bashir Machina, who was earlier recognised by the Federal High Court in Damaturu and Court of Appeal in Abuja as APC candidate for the election.
Briefing reporters after the judgement in Abuja, Lawan commended the apex court for strengthening democracy.
The Senate President had lost the APC presidential primary to a former Lagos governor, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, who later emerged as the APC presidential candidate.
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Although, Lawan did not take part in the Yobe North senatorial primary, the party had sent his name to INEC as its candidate but the electoral body refused to recognise him in line with the Electoral Act.
Machina, who won the primary, had resisted pressure to step down for Lawan and headed for the court to seek justice.
Lawan had said last year that he would not challenge the decisions of the lower courts, which affirmed Bashir Machina as the rightful candidate of APC for Yobe North.
The Senate President, on Monday, insisted that he didn’t approach to the Supreme Court to seek a redress, his party, constituents in Yobe North and political associates did.
He said the supreme court’s judgement is a victory is for the APC and Nigeria’s democracy.
He said the Ninth Senate under his leadership had been productive, and restated commitment to the leadership of the Red Chamber.
He said, “Let me start by thanking God for his blessing and for what had happened today in the Supreme Court.
“The judgement on Yobe North particularly is a victory for APC in Yobe and generally the APC across the country.
“What happened was democracy at work and the courts gave their various judgements and of course the Supreme Court gave the final judgement.
“I want to, at this point, commend the Supreme Court and of course the judiciary generally for making this kind of judgement to strengthen our democracy because it is not only for politicians to work and strengthen democracy, it is all of us and all the institutions have their roles to play. So I commend them.
“Let me take this opportunity to thank the All Progressives Congress, our party, for taking this matter to the Supreme Court.
“Actually, as an individual, I didn’t go to the Supreme Court to seek for a redress but my party did and my people of Yobe North and Yobe State generally and many political associate and well wishers across the country and beyond that there had to be an appeal at the Supreme Court on this matter.
“So, today it is a victory for all of us involved. I am the symbol but the victory is for our party, the APC and for democracy.
“This 9th Senate has been a very productive Senate. I want to recommit myself to the leadership of the Senate to continue to lead very well.
“We will always be appreciative of our colleagues who gave us the mandate to lead the 9th National Assembly. We will be looking at the 25th of February when the Presidential and the National Assembly elections will take place.
“By the Grace of God, Nigerians will Vote APC once again. On the 25th, the presidential candidate of the APC Asiwaju Ahmed Bola Tinubu, Jagaban Borgu, will be voted in as President of Nigeria by the grace of God along side distinguished Senator Kashim Shetima, who is the vice presidential candidate.
“When it comes to the senatorial and House of Representatives elections, you know what it will be. It will be a landslide majority for the APC.
“We will continue to give Nigeria leadership to continue with those programmes and projects that we have been doing very well and rethink and retool those that we think we have not done very well. This I believe will make Nigeria better.”