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Tuesday, 9 April 2019

Zamfara State Gov-elect Petition INEC, Demands Certificate Of Return

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The Zamfara state governor-elect,  Alhaji Mukhtar  Idris, has urged the Independent National Election Commission, (INEC) to release his Certificate of Return, having been declared the winner of the March 9 gubernatorial election. 

He also asked the electoral body to release the certificate of return of all elected members of the House of Assembly.
The Commission withheld the certificate of return of the governor-elect and members-elect of the House of Assembly, due to the judgment of the Court of Appeal Division in Sokoto State. 
The governor-elect’s action was contained in a letter written to the INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmud Yakubu, by his counsel, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria Mahmud Magaji.
Magaji said: “It is worthy of note that the purported judgment of the Court of Appeal, has no positive or direct order.
“But, assuming there is, even a court order arising from the said judgment, we still have 21 days within which to appeal, thus, putting into abeyance the said judgment until after the lapse of the said 21days.
“But, in the case at hand, the parties (APC Zamfara) still has 21 days, existing side by side with their constitutional right of appeal.
‘’Finally, we urge INEC to abide fully with the provision of section 143 of the Electoral Act by releasing the certificate of return to the Zamfara state governor-elect as well as all the elected members of the House of Assembly.’
‘’According to the Electoral Act, section 143(1) states that “if the election tribunal or the court, as the case may be, determined that if a candidate returned and elected was not validly elected, then, if Notice of Appeal against that decision is given within 21days, from the date of the decision, the candidate returned as elected shall, notwithstanding the contrary decision of the election tribunal or the court, remain in office pending the determination of the appeal.
“Section 143 of the Electoral Act also states that, “if the election tribunal or the court, as the case may be, determined that if a candidate returned and elected the candidate returned as elected shall, notwithstanding the contrary decision of the election tribunal or the court, remain in office; within which an appeal may be brought.”
The state governorship and House of Assembly election petition tribunal are expected to commence sitting in the next two weeks; after its inaugural sitting in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, last week.
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