Guber Tribunal: Nasarawa PDP Witnesses Admit over Voting against Party’s Candidate

Igbawase Ukumba in Lafia

Witnesses called by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) yesterday testified against its Nasarawa State Governorship Candidate, David Ombugadu, at the Governorship Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Lafia, the capital of Nasarawa State.

The PDP had called Cletus Yakubu and Useni Isa Onawo as its witnesses to results in Sabon Gari Electoral Ward of Doma Local Government Area of the state where INEC cancelled the entire results for over voting.

The PDP governorship candidate, David Umbumgadu, is challenging the decision of INEC to have cancelled the results, arguing that the election was successfully conducted in the aforementioned ward without any over voting and that he (Ombugadu) won with 311 votes.

At the resumed hearing yesterday, the PDP agent for the ward, Cletus Yakubu, and the ward collation agent, Useni Isa Onawo, during cross examination by Governor Abdullahi Sule’s lawyer, Adebayo Adelekun (SAN), drew the attention of the two PDP witnesses to a CTC document of the said results by INEC which clearly showed over voting duly signed and certified by INEC.

Consequently, the PDP witnesses agreed that there was over voting in the Sabon Gari Ward of the Doma Local Government Area of the state.

Adelekun also drew the attention of the two PDP’s witnesses to the fact that in Sabon Gari Electoral Ward, total number of valid votes cast were 326, total number of accredited voters were 326 and number of rejected votes was one (1), which brought the total number to 327 clearly showed over voting by one vote.

He continued that the records of the results clearly showed on INEC result in the ward which led to the cancellation of the entire results.

The two PDP witnesses accepted before the tribunal that, indeed there was over voting base on documents tendered in court which led to the cancellation.

Earlier, it was equally discovered by the APC lawyer, Dr. Hassam Liman (SAN) that the PDP agent, Cletus Yakubu, who appeared as PDP witness in the Governorship Tribunal was also appearing for APC as a witness in a suit filed by APC House of Representatives candidate for Karu, Keffi and Kokona federal constituency, Hon Kolo kotu, against the winner of the election, Hon Jonathan Gaza of the SDP and INEC.

Dr Liman therefore, promised to provide the tribunal with records of proceedings of the National Assembly Elections Petition Tribunal where the PDP witness,  Yakubu, testified as APC collection agent in Garaku, Kokona Local Government Area of the state.

All the submissions were accepted in court as exhibits and chairman of the tribunal, Justice Ezekiel Oyeyemi Ajayi, adjourned to July 26, 2023 for continuation of presentation of witnesses by the PDP.

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