Appeal Court Nullifies Election Of Kaduna Assembly Speaker

The Court of Appeal, which is based in Abuja, declared Yusuf Liman’s election as Speaker of the Kaduna State House of Assembly to be invalid. In five polling units (PUs), a rerun has been mandated.

On September 30, the State Assembly Election Petition Tribunal vacated Liman’s victory in the Makera State Constituency and mandated a rerun in forty-two polling units.

This happened as a result of a petition that Solomon Katuka, the candidate for the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), submitted to the Tribunal contesting the election of Liman, the candidate for the All Progressives Congress (APC).

The PDP candidate claimed in the petition that there were significant irregularities in the Speaker’s election. The candidate further asserted that he had won the Makera constituency House of Assembly Election on March 18, 2023, and thus should have been proclaimed the victor.

A total of 42 polling units are impacted, including 37 in the Makera ward, 2 in the Barnawa ward, 1 in the Kakuri Gwari ward, 1 in the Television ward, and 1 in the Kakuri Hausa ward.

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the APC candidate, both of which were dissatisfied with the Tribunal’s decision, lodged an appeal and a cross-appeal against the tribunal’s ruling, with the latter also requesting an explicit declaration.

In contrast, the Appeal Court, on Friday, November 24, 2023, in Abuja, rendered a decision wherein Justice O. O. Adejumo, Justice A. O. Oyetula, and Justice P. A. Obiora dismissed the appeal lodged by the speaker and INEC. Instead, the court mandated a retrial in five polling units, as opposed to the initial count of 42 as directed by the tribunal.

The appellate court mandated a rerun in the following polling units: Kakuri Gwari Ward PU 006, Television Ward PU 022, Barnawa Wards PU 005 and 009, and Kakuri Hausa Ward PU 045.

At this time, the APC has received 17,470 votes, while the PDP has accumulated 17,088. The court rendered a null and void decision on Liman’s election on the grounds that the lead margin of 382 was insufficient to cover the number of Permanent Voter Cards collected in the affected polling units.

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