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JUST IN: Appeal court sacks Abba Yusuf as Kano governor

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JUST IN: Supreme Court reserves judgment in Kano governorship dispute

The court of appeal in Abuja, on Friday, affirmed the order of the Kano state governorship election petition tribunal which sacked Abba Yusuf, candidate of the New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP), as governor of the state.

In a judgment delivered on Friday, a three-member panel of the appellate court held that the NNPP breached the constitution by sponsoring Yusuf who was not a member of the party.

The lower court had declared 165,663 votes of Yusuf, who contested under the New Nigerian Peoples Party (NNPP), invalid on the grounds that they were not signed or stamped by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

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The governor’s votes were then reduced to 853,939 while those of Nasir Ganuwa, his All Progressives Congress (APC) rival, remained at 890,705.

However, Yusuf had rejected the tribunal verdict, which he described as “unfair” and “a miscarriage of justice”, and headed to the appeal court.

At the court, Wole Olanipekun, SAN, lead for Yusuf, asked that the judgement of the tribunal be set aside.

Kicking against the ruling on ballot papers, the senior lawyer said that was the first time in the history that a tribunal would annul an election over non-signing of the back of ballot papers.

He had said the tribunal erred, arguing further that, that was the first time that a political party would file a matter without joining its candidate as a party in the petition and the candidate would declared winner of the polls.

But Akin Olujimi SAN, counsel for APC, countered him saying the Appeal Court stated emphatically that the non-signing of ballots amounted to electoral malpractice.

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