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Breaking: Supreme Court Gives Yobe North APC Senatorial Ticket to Lawan
Alex Enumah in Abuja
In a split judgment of three to two justices, the Supreme Court on Monday declared Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, as candidate of the All Progressives Congress in the February 25 Senatorial election for Yobe North Senatorial District.
The majority decision delivered by Justice Centus Nweze, made the declaration after setting aside both the decisions of the Court of Appeal and trial court which earlier affirmed Bashir Machina as candidate.
According to Nweze, the lower courts lacked the necessary jurisdiction to hear the suits because it was commenced by originating summons, adding that the dispute in the case was one that cannot be resolved without oral evidence, especially in proving allegations of fraud.
But in their dissenting decision, Justices Emmanuel Agim and Adamu Jauro, upheld the concurrent judgment of the lower courts which dismissed the case of the APC.
They held that the lower courts were rights in declaring Machina as rightful candidate for the Yobe North election since, Ahmad Lawan never participated in the APC primary held on May 28, 2022, when he withdrew voluntarily to participate in the presidential primary held on June 8, 2022.
The minority decision said the conduct of another primary on June 9, 2022 where Lawan emerged was in breach of Section 84 (5) of the Electoral Act as the APC never cancelled the May 28 primary before organizing another.
Justices Jauro and Agim therefore deemed the conduct of the second primary held on June 9 as illegal.
The minority decision further stressed that Lawan cannot emerge as candidate in a primary election where he never took part in.
A declarative order from the minority decision awarded the cost of N3 million against the APC for bringing a suit that is incompetent.