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A/court upholds Fintiri’s victory, dismisses Binani’s petition


man jailed for abusing Governor Fintiri

The Court of Appeal in Abuja on Monday dismissed the petition by the All Progressives Congress and its governorship candidate, Senator Aisha Dahiru Binani, seeking to invalidate the election of Umar Ahmadu Fintiri as the duly elected governor of Adamawa State.

Justice Tunde Oyebanji Awotoye, who wrote the judgment, threw out the case on various grounds of abnormalities.

He held that Governor Fintiri of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, was lawfully declared the winner of the poll by the Adamawa State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal.

Among the grounds, the Appeal Court emphasized that Binani and APC failed to present Polling Agents who participated in the conduct of the election as witnesses.

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Instead, they called Campaign Coordinators who were not present at the election venue.

Justice Awotoye stated, “The three witnesses called to establish malpractices in 27 Local Government Areas, who were Campaign Coordinators, are mere hearsay witnesses having not been party agents.”

He added that attaching probate values to the testimony of the Campaign Coordinators was against the law.

The Court also noted that the brief of argument filed by Binani and APC was in contravention of the law and deemed incompetent.

Additionally, the records of appeal transmitted to the Court of Appeal by Binani and APC were declared incomplete and insufficient for the Court to make any finding.

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The unanimous judgment dismissed the appeal in its entirety and awarded a cost of N1 million to be paid to Fintiri and PDP by Binani and APC.

The Adamawa State Governorship Electoral Petitions Tribunal had earlier dismissed Binani’s petition seeking Fintiri’s removal from office in October.

The Court of Appeal’s decision affirms Governor Ahmadu Fintiri’s re-election.

After the supplementary election, the Independent National Electoral Commission announced Fintiri of the Peoples Democratic Party as the winner with 430,861 votes, while Binani of the APC polled 398,788 votes.

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The appeal court held that the appellant’s brief was invalid and likely to be struck out for being incompetent.

It further stated that the appellants filed an incompetent record of appeal contrary to the practice directions of the court and tried to make the appeal court speculate.

The court also concluded that the appellant’s allegations of corrupt practices were not backed by sufficient evidence and were rightly struck out by the tribunal.

The appeal court ordered Binani and APC to pay N1 million to the governor and his party for filing a “vague” application.