The Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja has dismissed an application filed by James Faleke seeking the nullification of the installation of Yahaya Bello as Kogi state governor.
Faleke had argued that the votes polled by the All Progressives Congress (APC) were his following the death of Abubakar Audu.
Justice Jummai Sankey in a ruling on Thursday, August 4, 2016 stated that the constitution does not recognise independent candidature, adding that Faleke could not lay claims to the number of votes polled before the demise of Audu.
The presiding judge said Bello’s nomination to replace the late Audu did not contravene the constitution or the electoral act.
She stated that Falake was only selected after the primary election which produced the Late Audu as the APC’s flag bearer for the Kogi polls.
Justice Sankey maintained that Faleke was not nominated by the APC as its substantive candidate in the governorship election.
Similarly, the election petition tribunal dismissed Faleke’s attempt to nullify Bello’s election. According to the court, Faleke could not be declared governor because he did not participate in the APC primary election.
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) declared Bello as the winner of the election after the conclusion of the supplementary poll which took place in 91 polling units in the state on December 6, 2015.
The APC retained Faleke as its deputy governorship candidate after Audu died at the conclusion of the first round of the election held on November 21, 2015.
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