Kogi guber: Wada wins as Supreme Court dismisses Wada, Akpoti’s appeal
The Supreme Court on Monday dismissed the two appeals challenging the victory of Governor Yahaya Bello in the November 16, 2019 governorship election in Kogi State.
The two appeals dismissed are that of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its governorship candidate, Engr. Musa Wada and the one filed by the Social Democratic Party (SDP) and its governorship candidate, Natasha Akpoti challenging the victory of Yahaya Bello of the All Progressive Congress (APC) in the election.
In dismissing the appeal by Wada and his party, the seven-man panel of Justices of the apex court presided over by the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Ibrahim Tanko Muhammad said the appellant failed to prove their allegations of electoral malpractices and other irregularities in the conduct of the said election.
In the lead judgment prepared by Justice Inyang Okoro and read by Justice Uwani Abba’aji, the apex court dismissed the appeal for lacking in merit and upheld the concurrent decisions of the Kogi State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal and the Court of Appeal, which had both upheld Yahaya Bello’s victory at the election.
The apex court then resolved all the five issues raised for determination in the appeal against Wada and his party in the disputed poll.
Resolving all the five issues in favour of Bello, his party and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) the apex court declared that, “Having resolved all the five issues against the appellants, it is abundantly clear that the appeal is devoid of any scintilla of merit and it is accordingly dismissed”.
In the same vein, the apex court held that Akpoti and her party failed to lead credible and substantial evidence to support their allegations and dismissed the appeal for lacking in merit.
Akpoti and her party had prayed the court to nullify Yahaya Bello’s election, but the court held that it was unnecessary to disturb the concurrent decisions of the Tribunal and the Court of Appeal, which upheld Bello’s victory at the election held on November 16, 2019.
Apart from the CJN, Justices Okoro and Abba-Aji, other members of the panel who also agreed with the lead judgments were, Justices Olabode Rhodes-Vivour, Sylvester Ngwuta, Kudirat Kekere-Ekun, and Amina Augie.