From: Femi Oyelola Kaduna
A Court of Appeal Kaduna Division yesterday upheld the election of Malam Nasir Ahmad el-Rufai, as the elected Governor of Kaduna State in the March 9th, 2019 gubernatorial election.
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its candidate, Isah Ashiru had filed an appeal before the court, challenging the decision of the lower tribunal, which declared El-Rufai winner of the election.
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) had earlier declared Nasir Ahmed El-Rufai as winner of the March 9, 2019 governorship election.
But the PDP and its candidate petitioned the tribunal on the grounds that the election was flawed with massive fraud and irregularities and asked the tribunal to cancel a total of 515,951 votes which it claimed were unlawfully added to the APC as well as 124,210 unlawful votes which it said were also added to the PDP, through wrong or double entry on the result sheets by INEC.
Meanwhile, the five-man panel of Appellate court Judges UI Anyanwu, HAO Abiru, TY Hassan, BM Ugo and BB Aliyu on Thursday unanimously affirmed the decision of the lower tribunal and declared El-Rufai as the truly elected Governor of the state.
Speaking to newsmen shortly after the judgement, Lead Counsel to the Second Defendant (El-Rufai), A.U Mustapha SAN said, the uananimous judgement was sound, as all issued raised in the appeal exhaustively looked into.
The SAN said, the appeal judgement has vindicated Governor El-Rufai, the All Progressives Congress (APC) and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), that the Governor was duly elected by the majority of the Kaduna State citizens.
“The judgement has shown that, our judicial system is fair. All the issues raised in the appeal were throughlly and exhaustively examined despite the shortness of time before the court came to conclusion that the appeal lacks merit and waste of precious judicial time.”
Meanwhile, Counsel to the appellants, (PDP and Ashiru) Mutum L.A Mutum said, they have some grouse with the judgement, but they will study it before deciding the next line of action.