The Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja has affirmed the tribunal judgment which declared the All Progressive Congress candidate, Nasiru Gawuna winner of the 2023 governorship election.
The Tribunal led by Justice Oluyemi Osadebayo had nullified the election of Governor Abba Yusuf by declaring one hundred and sixty-five thousand, six hundred and sixty-three of his votes as invalid, stating that the the ballot papers were not signed nor stamped by the Independent National Electoral Commission.
While delivering judgment on Yusuf’s appeal on Friday, the three-member panel of the appeal court led by Justice M.A Adumeh held that Yusuf was not qualified to contest the election as he was not in the membership register of his political party.
Citing a provision of the electoral act, Justice Adumeh said a party must have the names of its registered members both in hard and soft copies and also said that Yusuf did not put up any resistance against the allegation.
“The tribunal was wrong not to have disqualified him. The failure to comply with sec 177(c) is fatal to their election. A person must. Where a party carelessly nominates a candidate such is a nullity irrespective of whether he performs well. Sponsorship without membership is like putting nothing on something, it cannot stand. This is a clear example of acting with brazen impunity as if the Constitution is not binding, “he held.