SAN FRANCISCO, June 30, (THEWILL) – The Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja has reserved judgement in the appeals filed by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its governorship candidate, Musa Wada, as well as that of Natasha Akpoti of the Social Democratic Party (SDP), challenging the re-election of Kogi State Governor, Yahaya Bello.
At the final hearing on Monday, Wada’s counsel, Jibrin Okutepa, urged the appellate court to upturn the decision of the Kogi State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal insisting that there were overwhelming evidence that the election was marred by electoral malpractices.
On his part, counsel for the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Dr Alex Izinyon, asked the court to dismiss the appeals.
Lawyers to Governor Bello and the All Progressives Congress (APC), Joseph Daudu and Ahmed Raji, aligned themselves with the submissions of Dr Izinyon.
After listening to the arguments, the five-man panel of justices led by Justice Adamu Jauro reserved judgement in the appeals.
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Wada and the PDP had in December 2019 approached the Tribunal, asking it to order INEC to disqualify Governor Bello from contesting the 2019 governorship election in Kogi State.
In the appeal filed by the SDP and its governorship candidate challenging the governor’s election, the appellants also alleged massive electoral malpractices and falsification of certificates on the part of the deputy governor of the state, Edward Onoja.
The five-man panel of justices also reserved judgement in the appeal filed by the Democratic Peoples Party (DPP) to a date that would be communicated to the parties.