The Kaduna State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal will on Monday, September 9, rule on the petition challenging the re-election of Gov. Nasiru El-Rufai of Kaduna state. The Tribunal Secretary, Mrs Hafsat Suleiman, disclosed this to the News Agency of Nigeria on Saturday in Kaduna State.
Suleiman said the Tribunal concluded it’s sitting on August 19 and had fixed Monday, September 9, to pass its verdict on the petition filed by the Peoples Democratic Party. The PDP and its governorship candidate in the March 9 poll, Alhaji Isah Ashiru, had petitioned the Tribunal asking it to nullify El-Rufai’s election. The petitioners in their final written address asked the Tribunal to cancel a total of 515, 951 votes which it contended were unlawfully added to the total votes cast during the March 9 poll.
The petitioners had called 135 witnesses out of the 685 they assembled to prove the alleged massive rigging, ballot stuffing, and other irregularities during the poll as contained in their petition. The petitioners had accused the Independent National Electoral Commission of adding 391,741 votes to El-Rufai of APC and 124, 210 unlawful votes to the PDP, through wrong or double entry on the result sheets.
They also contended that declaring El-Rufai winner by INEC was illegal as he did not score the majority of lawful votes. The PDP through its legal team led by Mr Emmanuel C. Ukala (SAN), said deducting 391,741 votes from 1,045,427 scored by El-Rufai and 124,210 from Ashiru’s 814, 168 votes will give victory to PDP and Ashiru, its candidate in the poll.
The council had argued that after the deduction of the alleged unlawful votes, Ashiru will be left with 689,958 lawful votes, while El-Rufai will have 653,686 votes.