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Supporters jubilate as S’Court affirms Kefas, Fubara, Aliyu’s elections

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The Supreme Court, on Thursday, affirmed the victories of governors Agbu Kefas of Taraba State, Ahmed Aliyu of Sokoto State and  Siminalayi Fubara of Rivers State in the March 18, 2023 governor elections in their different states.

The decisions of the apex court in the different states were greeted with jubilation by the supporters of the governors.

A Supreme Court panel, led by Justice Ibrahim Saulawa, dismissed the appeal by Tonye Cole of the All Progressives Congress against the election of Fubara.

Justice Saulawa said Cole was unable to substantially prove his allegation that the election was not conducted according to the provisions of the Electoral Act.

Justice Lawal Garba dismissed the appeal by the New Nigerian Peoples Party and its governorship candidate, Yahaya Sani, against the election of Kefas as Taraba State governor.

Justice Garba said, “Since the records of appeal were incomplete, the issues raised by the NNPP have no foundation.

“You cannot put something on nothing and expect it to stand. The NNPP appeal stands dismissed.”

In the Sokoto matter, the apex court also upheld the concurrent judgments of the Election Tribunal and Appeal Court affirming the election of the governor.

The candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Sai’du Umar, had challenged Aliyu’s victory at the poll.

Reading the lead judgment, Justice Tijani Abubakar said, “The court below was right to have affirmed the decision of the trial Election Tribunal and therefore, this appeal is devoid of merit and dismissed.”

Jubilations in Jalingo

Various groups carrying placards with different inscriptions such as ‘Governor Agbu Kefas is God’s project’, ‘Mr. Infrastructure carry go’, ‘Moving Forward 2023-2027’, ‘On your mandate we shall stand’, among others marched through the major streets in celebration of the governor’s victory at the apex court.

At the Danbaba Suntain Airport in Jalingo, thousands of people besieged the airport waiting for the arrival of the governor but later left when they were informed that the governor could not make it to Jalingo due to poor weather conditions.

Some of the residents who spoke to our correspondents in Jalingo expressed happiness saying, that now that the election cases were over, the governor will concentrate and deliver quality governance to the people.

Fubara expresses gratitude to God, Tinubu, Wike, Rivers people

Reacting to the Supreme Court judgement, in Port Harcourt on Thursday, the Rivers State Governor Siminalayi Fubara expressed gratitude to God for His help, to President Bola Tinubu for his fatherly role concerning the internal crisis and the litigation against his election and to the minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Nyesom Wike, whom he described as his “Oga”, for all his support.

He also declared his resolve to remain committed to the purpose for which he was elected, saying he would not allow anything to distract the governance of the state.

He said his triumph at the Supreme Court laid to rest the legal battles that added to the distractions his administration grappled with in the last eight months.

He stated, ‘‘About an hour ago, the Supreme Court revalidated our mandate in the election. It is a victory for the entire State.

“It is important for us to note that we need this victory to consolidate the purpose of governance. Prior, we have had a few distractions here and there.

“And the good news that came to us this morning is a refreshing strength that will encourage us to continue the good works in governance.”

The governor called on everyone to join hands with his administration to build a competitive state that will be reckoned with as truly prosperous in all ramifications.

“We have a dream of making it a highly competitive State that will measure, if not up to Lagos but close to becoming like Lagos. We can only achieve this in an atmosphere of peace.

“So I am calling on everyone, not just on our internal issue but those members from other parties, the issue is settled, come and let’s build the Rivers State of our dream.

“We will continue to protect and provide the basic needs of governance to everyone

Sokoto PDP accepts ruling in good faith

Also in Sokoto State the Peoples Democratic Party received the Supreme Court ruling with utmost respect for the outcome of the process.

The party in a statement signed by its Publicity Secretary, Hassan Sanyinnawal, and made available to our correspondent said as a law-abiding political party, “the PDP recognises the Judiciary as the constitutional arbiter on issues regarding elections in our nation.

“Our party also strongly believes it is solely by divine will that power is acquired and sustained at appointed periods. We therefore enjoin members and supporters of the PDP in Sokoto State to exercise their traditional calm in respect for the rule of law”.

The party further urges its members to remain committed to the progress of the PDP, “as our party dedicates itself to playing its role in the democratic governance of our dear state.

“In connection to that, our party shall discharge its responsibility to the people of ensuring that their entitlement to service delivery is guaranteed by the government in power, accountably and transparently.

“We wish to express the party’s appreciation to our members and the entire people of Sokoto State for their support during the electioneering and legal processes”

The party however calls upon all stakeholders in the entire state to rededicate themselves to ensuring that the democratic ideal is adhered to in the business of governance in our state.

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