The Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal in Kano State, has sacked the Gov. Abba Kabir Yusuf of New Nigerian People’s Party (NNPP) and declared the All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship candidate, Nasiru Yusuf Gawuana, as winner of the March 18 gubernatorial election.
Persecondnews recalls that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) had declared that the NNPP polled 1,019,602 votes to defeat the APC, who scored 890,705 votes.
Yusuf, who contested on the platform of the NNPP, was declared winner of the election by INEC.
The APC and its governorship candidate, Gawuana, not being satisfied with the result, filed a petition at the tribunal challenging the results declared by the electoral body.
However, In a judgment transmitted virtually on Wednesday, the three-man panel, headed by Justice Oluyemi Akintan-Osadebay, ordered the withdrawal of the Certificate of Return issued by INEC to Yusuf and directed a Certificate of Return be issued to Gawuna.
The tribunal upturned the declaration of INEC after deducting 165,663 votes from Yusuf as invalid, stating that the ballot papers used were not stamped or signed and therefore declared invalid.
During the ruling, the election tribunal also dismissed the petition filed by the APC and Gawuana, challenging the legitimacy of the candidature of Gov. Abba Kabir Yusuf.
The court announced that the issue of candidacy is an internal matter of the party, so it does not affect the plaintiffs, let alone interfere in it.
APC and Gawuna had petitioned the tribunal that Yusuf is not a full member of the NNPP, and he was not in its register when the party nominated him, so he was not fit to contest.
While delivering judgment, the court held that an individual’s membership of a political party is an internal matter.