Tribunal Removes APC Lawmaker, Declares PDP Winner In Kwara

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The Kwara State House of Assembly Rerun Election Petition Tribunal has sacked Adam Rufai of the All Progressives Congress after he had won the by-election for Patigi Constituency.

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The decision was made public on Monday.

According to Punch, the tribunal subsequently declared Salihu Mohammed Gada of the Peoples Democratic Party winner of the by-election held on March 14, 2020.

However, the Kwara State chapter of APC rejected the judgment of the tribunal which declared the candidate of PDP the winner of the recent Patigi by-election.

The seat became vacant when Rufai’s brother, Saidu Ahmed, died in December 2019 after a brief illness.

It explained that the judgment was based on the difference between ‘Adam’ and ‘Adama’ on the certificate of the candidate of the APC.

Kwara APC made the complaint in a press statement by its Publicity Secretary, Folaranmi Aro, on Monday.

The statement was titled, ‘APC rejects, to appeal Tribunal’s judgment on Patigi … Says judgment a judicial subversion of people’s mandate’.

Aro complained that PDP never called any witness from the examination body to substantiate its claim that APC candidate was not the owner of the certificate he tendered for his election.

Part of the statement read, “The tribunal did not deny that we won the election overwhelmingly. It instead hid under a feeble excuse that the names of our candidate on the two certificates he presented to the electoral body are slightly different from each other to award our mandate to the opposition.

“It is a sad day for democracy as the judgment is a slap on thousands of the electorate who stood in the sun to make their choices.

“This judgment is a violent attack on the position of the Supreme Court in many established cases where an alphabet was either omitted or added to a candidate’s name. We are definitely going to appeal the judgment because it signals danger for our democracy and amounted to stealing the mandate of the people. The judgment is a judicial subversion of the mandate of the people.”

Meanwhile, a former senate president, Bukola Saraki, has congratulated Yahaya over the judgment.

The former Kwara State governor tweeted, “A big congrats to the candidate of our party @OfficialPDPNig for the State Assembly by-election held in Patigi, Kwara State on 14th March, 2020. Hon. Salihu Muhammad Yahaya has just been declared the winner by a tribunal. I also congratulate all our stakeholders for their steadfastness.”


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