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Tribunal affirms Bello’s election, dismisses Wada’s petition

Paul Daudu, counsel to the respondent.

The Kogi State Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal sitting in Abuja, has affirmed Governor Yahaya Bello as the winner of the November 16, 2019 governorship election in Kogi State state.

Two of the three members of the panel dismissed the petition filed by the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP and its governorship candidate in the election, Mr. Musa Wada.

The Chairman of the Tribunal, Justice Kashim Kaigama and another member, Justice Baraka Wali, held that the petitioners failed to prove the allegations of over-voting, massive thumb printing, voter intimidation, and other electoral malpractices.

The Tribunal also awarded a cost of five hundred thousand naira against the petitioners to be paid to each of the respondents.

While dissenting the judgment, Justice Ohimai Ovbiagele nullified the election of Governor Yahaya Bello and ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission to conduct a fresh election in the seven out of the thirteen local governments areas in the state, within three months.

Reacting to the judgment, counsel to the petitioners, Mr. Jibril Okutekpa SAN, expressed dissatisfaction with the majority judgment and argued that the decision of the tribunal would be appealed.

Counsel to the Respondent, Mr Paul Daudu, maintained that the judgment was in order.

The PDP and its governorship candidate in the Nov 16, 2019 election in Kogi state, Mr Musa Wada, had dragged the APC, Yahaya and INEC to the tribunal insisting that the Election was marred by widespread irregularities.

Ifeoma Nwovu

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