ABUJA, Nigeria – The Federal High Court in Abuja has voided the nomination of two House of Representatives candidates in Jigawa and Zamfara States.
The court, in two judgments, sacked Aminu Kanta, candidate of the All Progressives Congress, (APC) for Babura/Garki Federal Constituency of Jigawa State; and Sani Dan Galadima, candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, (PDP), for Kaura Namoda Birnin Magaji Federal Constituency of Zamfara State.
While the court ordered that Alhaji Isa Dogonyaro be declared the APC lawful candidate for Babura/Garki Federal Constituency of Jigawa State, it ordered that the PDP conducts a fresh primary to elect its candidate for Kaura Namoda Bimin Magaji Federal Constituency of Zamfara State.
Justice Inyang Ekwo, while sacking Galadima, in a judgment on Monday, held that the serving House of Reps member was not a member of the APC as at when he participated in the primary election held by the PDP.
Justice Ekwo held that Galadima, having not resigned, defected or cross-carpeted from the APC to PDP within the time stipulated by law, was not a lawful member of PDP and cannot stand for any election on its platform.
The judge relied on Section 221 of the 1999 Constitution, section 84 of the Electoral Act 2022 and Article 50 (4) of the PDP to nullify the primary election of the PDP that produced him.
Justice Ekwo held that from the point of law, Galadima ought to have relinquished his APC membership 30 days before the primary election of the PDP before he could qualify as a valid candidate of PDP.
The judgment by Justice Ekwo was on the suit marked:FHC/ABJ/CS/832/2022 by two chieftains of PDP, Muzammil Mohammed Idris and Ibrahim Sani, with Galadima, Independent National Electoral Commission, (INEC), the PDP and its Chairman, Iyorchia Ayu as defendants.
In an earlier judgment by Justice Emeka Nwite, the court voided Kanta’s nomination on the grounds that he submitted a false name. Justice Nwite, in the judgment delivered on November 10, said that Kanta, who had previously claimed his name was Ahmed Mohammed contested the primary election under a false name.
The judge held that Aminu Kanta gave false information in relation to his name when he claimed that his name is Aminu Kanta and that Anmed Mohammed is his former name in the affidavit in support of personal particulars submitted to the 1st respondent (INEC) as the candidate of the 2nd respondent (APC) for the seat of a member of the House of Representatives.
Justice Nwite proceeded to issue an order disqualifying Kanta from contesting for the seat of Member of the House of Representatives, representing Babura/Gorki Federal Constituency in the 2023 general elections, as a candidate of the APC.The judge subsequently declared the plaintiff (Dongoyaro) as the candidate of the APC for Babura/Garki Federal Constituency in next year’s election, having scored the second highest number of votes at the primary election conducted by the party for the seat of a member of the House of Representatives, representing Babura/Gorki Federal Constituency.
The judgment was on the suit marked: FHC/ABJ/CS/1052/2022 filed by Dongoyaro, with INEC, APC and Kanta as defendants.