Kogi State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Abuja yesterday dismissed the petition filed by the deputy governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress, APC, in the November 21, 2015, governorship election in the state, James Falake, challenging the election of the incumbent Governor Yahaya Bello.
The three-man tribunal led by Justice Halima Mohammed held that Faleke lacked locus standi to challenge Bello’s election, having never been sponsored by his party as a governorship candidate in both the November 21 election and the December 6, 2015, supplementary poll.
Earlier in the judgment read by Justice Mohammed, the tribunal had upheld Bello’s preliminary objection to the petition to the effect that Faleke lacked legal capacity to file the petition, as the November 21
election which he claimed to have won having not been concluded.
The tribunal re-affirmed while considering the petition on merit that Faleke was never a governorship candidate of the APC at any stage of the election and did not participate in the primary leading to APC’s choice of governorship candidate, either for the November 21 election or the December 6 supplementary poll.
It held on the other hand that there was evidence that Bello participated in and emerged as the first runner-up in the primary from which the original governorship candidate of the party emerged.
It also held that the issues contended by Faleke bordered on the power of a political party to nominate its candidate, a decision which Justice Mohammed ruled that the tribunal lacked jurisdiction to.
The tribunal added that Faleke, having not participated in the said primary, lacked the locus standi to challenge Bello’s nomination by the party.
It added that going by the Supreme Court’s decision on PDP vs Okorocha, the votes polled on November 21 belonged to the various political parties, the APC thus lacked the power to replace its flag …Read More
Source:: Nigerian Pilot