Appeal Court Reserves Judgment On Kano Gov Election
The Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja has reserved judgment in the appeal filed by Governor Abba Kabir Yusuf of Kano State to challenge his removal by the Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal.
During Monday’s proceedings, Wole Olanipekun, the Counsel to Governor Abba, asked that the judgment of the tribunal be set aside.
While disagreeing on the ruling on ballot papers, the senior lawyer says this was the first time in history that a tribunal will annul an election over non-signing of the back of ballot papers.
He stated that the tribunal erred. He argued further that that was the first time a political party would file a matter without joining its candidate as a party in the petition and the candidate would be declared winner of the polls.
Counsel for the All Progressives Congress (APC) Akin Olujimi however, countered him saying the appeal court stated emphatically that the non-signing of ballots amounted to electoral malpractice.
He argued that INEC regulations have set out what presiding officers are to do at the point of voting, adding that the back of ballot papers must be signed and dated.
The appeal court panel subsequently reserved judgment, saying a date would be communicated to the parties.
A three-member panel of judges led by Justice Oluyemi Osadebay sacked Yusuf on September 20, 2023, 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 Ganuwa retained his 890,705 votes.
Mister Yusuf had rejected the tribunal verdict, which he described as unfair and a miscarriage of justice, and headed to the appeal court