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Faleke loses bid in Appeal Court as Bello smiles home

Kogi State Governor, Yahaya Bello

 The Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja has dismissed the suit filed by Mr. James Faleke, challenging the election of Mr. Yahaya Bello as Kogi State Governor, stating that Faleke's case lacks merit.

Justice Jummai Sankey in his ruling stated that according to section 221 of the Nigeria constitution, only the party could canvass for the votes.

She explained that the constitution does not recognize independent candidature, so Faleke could not lay claims to the number of votes pulled before the demise of Audu and before the election was concluded.

The judge also held that Faleke was only joined to Audu after the primaries had been concluded, but Bello whom the APC chose, participated in the primary election that produced Audu as candidate.

Sanko also added that the nomination of Bello to replace the late Audu did not contravene the constitution or the electoral act.

The appellate court had earlier reserved judgement after hearing submissions from all parties involved in the matter.

Council to Faleke, Akin Olujimi, had urged the Appeal Court to set aside the judgement of the Kogi State tribunal and invalidate the election of Yahaya Bello on the ground that Bello was not properly nominated.

He submitted that Bello did not undergo all the electioneering process as required by law before he emerged as his party candidate in the re-run election.

Joseph Daodu, who is council to Bello, insisted that the issue of candidates for election was sole responsibility of a political party.

 Council to INEC Ahmed Raji, asked the court to uphold the election of Yahaya Bello on the ground that he was properly nominated by APC as the replacement of Abubaker Audu who passed away during the election.      


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