Sokoto Guber Poll :Tribunal Upholds Tambuwal’s Election Victory

The Sokoto State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal, on Wednesday, declined to nullify the election of Governor Aminu Tambuwal of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.
In a unanimous judgment, the three-man panel tribunal headed by Justice Bawale Abdullahi affirmed the declaration of Tambuwal as the valid winner of the governorship election held in the state on March 9.
It dismissed the petition that was lodged against Tambuwal’s election victory by the governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Ahmed Aliyu.
The tribunal held that since the result declared by INEC enjoyed a presumption of regularity, the burden was on the petitioner to prove otherwise.
It discarded some of the documentary evidence the petitioner adduced before it on the premise that they were not properly certified.
It noted that whereas some of the witnesses made their written statements in the Hausa language, the petitioner only tendered the version that was translated into the English language, in evidence.
In the lead judgment that was read by the Chairman of the tribunal, he held that the petitioner was unable to prove any of the allegations in his petition.
Justice Abdullahi held that testimonies of most of the witnesses were based on hearsay evidence. He maintained that the APC candidate, having failed to discharge the burden of proof that was placed on him by the law, his petition was bound to be dismissed.
Other members of the panel that concurred with the lead verdict of the tribunal were Justices E.N. Anyadike and Kadi M.A. Oniye.
It will be recalled that the Sokoto State governorship election was declared inconclusive after 75, 403 votes were canceled, a figure that was higher than the 3, 413 votes margin that governor Tambuwal led the other candidates with.
A re-run poll that was conducted on March 23, saw Tambuwal emerging victorious with a slim margin of 342 votes.
Dissatisfied with the outcome, Aliyu approached the tribunal to challenge the declaration of Tambuwal as the winner.
Aside from his contention that the election was marred by irregularities, the petitioner told the tribunal that Tambuwal and his party. the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, did not score the majority of the lawful votes cast.


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