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Supreme Court upholds the election of Gov Nyako

20 November 2012, 14:15

Adamawa  -The Supreme Court on Tuesday in Abuja declared Murtala Nyako of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as duly elected governor of Adamawa.

Delivering the judgment, Justice Clara Ogunbiyi held that the petitioner, Mr Marcus Gundiri, of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) could not prove the criminal allegation brought against the respondents.

Ogunbiyi said that the petitioner particularly failed to prove the allegation of substantial non-compliance in accordance with the Electoral Act.

``When the petitioner discovered the complexity involved in proving the criminal allegation he asked the court for severance during the hearing.

``The court, however, turned down the request as doing so would have amounted to assisting the petitioner to do his case.

``It is the penal sincere disposition that the petition lacks credibility and merit, it is therefore dismissed.

``The election of Gov. Nyako is thereby upheld having duly been elected in the 2011 governorship election,’’ she said.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), reports that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the PDP were the other respondents.

Chief Charles Edosomwan (SAN), counsel to the petitioner, had asked the court to declare Gundiri the winner since the evidence before the tribunal proved that he (Gundiri) polled the highest votes.

The petitioner, who was the ACN Candidate in the Feb. 4, governorship election, had filed a petition before the State Elections Petition Tribunal over the declaration of Gov. Nyako as the winner.

Gundiri had alleged fraud by Nyako and thus wanted his victory overturned by the Tribunal.

He had prayed for the election results in Fufure, Maiha, Mayo Belwa, Yola North, Yola South, Girei, Madagali, Mubi North, Tongo, Numan and Demsa local government areas voided.

His argument was based on alleged breach of the provisions of the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended).

The petitioner also alleged falsification of election results, monetary inducement and intimidation of opposing political parties during the election.

Gundiri had argued that the respondents marred the voting process by multiple rigging, stuffing of ballot boxes, under-aged voting as well as multiple thumb-printing of ballot papers.

The Tribunal had on July 25, held that the principal petitioner failed to prove his case beyond reasonable doubt and declared Nyako’s election valid.

According to the Tribunal, Gundiri failed to produce evidence to substantiate the claims made of under-aged children, stuffing and hijack of ballot boxes.

NAN

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