- As PDP retains Bauchi, Sokoto
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By Lawrence Olaoye and Vivian Okejeme
President Muhammadu Buhari has congratulated his party, the All Progressives Congress (APC) for the Supreme Court judgement that upheld the elections of Governors Abdullahi Ganduje and Simon Lalong of Kano and Plateau states respectively.
The apex, court also yesterday, upheld the elections of Peoples Democratic Party’s Bala Mohammad of Bauchi state and Aminu Waziri Tambuwal of Sokoto state as duly elected Governors of their States.
In a statement made available to newsmen yesterday by his spokesman, Mallam Garba Shehu, the President felicitated with APC National Executive Council, National Working Committee and all members for the loyalty and consistency that translated into many victories, particularly the politically strategic states, Kano and Plateau, after tough legal challenges.
The President said, “I am glad this tortuous journey has ended in favour of the party and our governors. APC won the states and has proved it in court. It would have been a major blow if strategically important states like Kano and Plateau are lost.’’
While congratulating all the APC governors that the Supreme Court affirmed their elections, Buhari urged the electorate and politicians to strengthen the country’s judicial processes by always seeking redress in court.
“It has now become standard procedure for the opposition to challenge any poll or judgement that does not return its candidates.
“Election is good when they win. The opposite is the case if someone else emerges. But that is not the way it works. Democracy is not only about who wins or who loses, but also about the process. In disparaging every unfavourable result or judgement, they disparage the entire system.”
In respect of Plateau state, the court in a unanimous judgment delivered by Justice Adamu Galinje, held that the appellant, Senator Jeremiah Useni, failed to prove allegations made against the declaration of Lalong as the governor of the state.
The apex court in a unanimous judgment delivered by Justice Mohammed Dattijo also dismissed the appeal filed by former governor Mohammed Abubakar, against Bala Mohammad, on the grounds that the petition lacked merit
The seven-man panel of the justices of the Supreme Court held that the appellants in the two separate appeals did not demonstrate any pervasiveness of the concurrent judgment of both the Tribunal and the Court of Appeal.
On the qualification of governor Lalong to contest for the said election, the court held that the appellant failed to show that the governor did not comply with the constitution, citing Section 177 of the 1999 constitution as amended.
On Sokoto, the Supreme Court also affirmed the election of Governor Aminu Tambuwal of the People Democratic Party (PDP) as the duly elected governor of Sokoto state in the March 9 2019 election.
The seven-member of the apex court, in a unanimous judgment dismissed the appeal brought by Ahmed Aliyu of All Progressives Congress (APC) for lacking in merit.
In the judgment read by Justice Uwani Abba-aji, the Supreme Court held that, the appellant (Mr. Aliyu) had no credible evidence before the court to prove that the governor was not duly elected.