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Legit.ng recalls that the elections were held on February 25, 2023, to elect the president and vice president and members of the senate and house of representatives. The governorship and state houses of assembly elections were conducted on March 18.
Litigation, 2023 election and tribunals verdicts
Despite the efforts by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to reduce the chances of contentions, many candidates were dissatisfied with the outcome and have headed to courts to seek redress. No fewer than 10 of the 18 political parties have filed over 430 petitions at the various election tribunals in 27 states of the country to quash the victories of those INEC declared winners.
Legit.ng presents the checklist of winners and losers across the country as election tribunals delivered their verdicts concerning some cases.
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1) Caleb Mutfwang: Plateau state
In May 2023, a few days before his swearing-in as governor of Plateau state, the Governorship Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Jos ruled in favour of Barr. Caleb Mutfwang. The ruling dismissed the petition filed by the Allied Peoples’ Movement (APM) seeking the cancellation of his electoral victory.
Reacting, Mutfwang described the verdict as a landmark and dedicated it to God and Plateau people who he said willingly entrusted him with their mandate.
2) Bassey Otu: Cross River state
In July, the Cross River state governorship elections petitions tribunal dismissed a petition filed by the New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP) against Governor Bassey Otu, the incumbent and gubernatorial candidate of All Progressives Congress (APC) in the 2023 election.
In a unanimous judgment, Justice Oken Inneh said the petitioners failed to establish that their candidate was lawfully excluded.
3) Chinedu Onyeizu: Abia state
In June, the tribunal, sitting in Umuahia, dismissed Chinedu Onyeizu’s petition against Eyinnaya Abaribe of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA).
Onyeizu is the 2023 Labour Party (LP) candidate for Abia South senatorial district.
The tribunal took its decision, citing Onyeizu’s failure to apply for pre-trial.
Subsequently, Onyeizu vowed to appeal the tribunal’s verdict at the appellate court.
4) Gboyega Adefarati: Ondo state
Earlier this month (August), the Ondo state election petition tribunal sitting in Akure upheld the victory of a member of the house of representatives, Gboyega Adefarati.
Adefarati represents Akoko South-East/Akoko South-West federal constituency.
5) Midala Balami: Borno state
Last Friday (August 25), the national assembly election petition tribunal sitting in Borno upheld the election victory of Midala Balami, a member of the house of representatives representing Askira-Uba/ Hawul federal constituency.
Balami is the only federal Lawmaker elected on the platform of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Borno state during the February 25, 2023, general elections.
6) Eshinlokun-Sanni: Lagos
The LP suffered a setback in Lagos as the national and state house of assembly election tribunal sitting in Ikeja on Wednesday, August 30, upheld the election of Senator Wasiu Sanni Eshinlokun as the duly-elected Senator of Lagos state Central senatorial district in the election held on February 25.
The three-man tribunal led by Justice Ashua Ewah dismissed the petition filed by the LP candidate, Architect Abiodun Dabiri.
NOTE: Legit.ng will continue to update this story as new judgements are delivered.
Sani tells Atiku to withdraw tribunal case
In a piece of related news, Legit.ng reported that a former lawmaker, Shehu Sani questioned the organisation of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and why its presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, is still at the presidential election tribunal when one of its top members, Nyesom Wike, is already a part of the administration of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).
Recall that President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, on Monday, August 21, inaugurated Wike as the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).