Tribunal strikes out petition filed by PDP, Adokwe against Al-Makura
On Friday, The National and State House of Assembly Petition Tribunal sitting in Lafia, struck out the petition filed by the Peoples Democratic Party and Senator Suleiman Adokwe, challenging the declaration of Senator Tanko Al-Almakura of the All Progressives Congress as the winner of the Nassarawa South Senatorial seat.
News Agency of Nigeria reports that the election was held on March 9, 2019 across the senatorial district.
Adokwe, a three-time Senator from the state, challenged the election on account of the alleged unlawful declaration of Al-Makura as the winner of the poll and claimed that the polls did not comply with provisions of the Electoral Act 2010.
He had also alleged intimidation of voters, unlawful cancellation of votes and malpractice during the election.
In a unanimous judgment, read by its chairman, Justice David Ugoh, the tribunal held that the petitioner failed to prove that the respondent had not scored the highest lawful votes at the election.
He held that the petitioner also failed to prove non-compliance with the Electoral Act, how voters were prevented from voting, the illegal cancellation of results and how alleged malpractices were carried out.
Ugoh explained that the petitioner also failed to provide witnesses from the various polling units to prove the allegations, instead brought a witness who was not a polling unit agent.
He, therefore, said that the burden of proof lay with the petitioner.
“Hence he failed to prove that, we, therefore, uphold the result declared by the Independent National Electoral Commission.”
Ugoh said that the petition was lacking in merit.
Reacting to the judgment, counsel to the petitioner, Israel Usman, said they were displeased with the judgment and would study it to decide their next line of action.