Let My Declaration As Adamawa Governor-elect Stand, Binani Tells Court

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Aishatu ‘Binani’ Ahmed has asked the Abuja Division of the Federal High Court to forthwith recognise her as the governor-elect of Adamawa.

Ms Ahmed said she had fulfilled all constitutional requirements as a candidate and her declaration as the winner of the state’s governorship election should be allowed to stand for now, notwithstanding its illegality.

Ms Ahmed’s declaration was promptly nullified on Sunday by the Independent National Electoral Commission, which said its commissioner in Adamawa suddenly went rogue to pronounce Ms Ahmed as the winner even though he was not the returning officer and while the collation of results was still underway.

Ms Ahmed, in the suit she jointly filed with her party, the All Progressives Congress, on April 17 and marked FHC/ABJ/CS/510/2023, said the court should immediately review INEC’s nullification of the exercise, arguing that the electoral office lacked the powers to reverse a declaration.

Ms Ahmed said incumbent Governor Ahmadu Fintiri and the electoral office should take their complaints to the election petitions tribunal if they’re not satisfied with the illegal declaration on Sunday morning.

INEC, however, said it had the power to reverse an invalid decision and immediately placed the rogue REC Hudu Yunusa-Ari on suspension.

Federal election laws said INEC shall have the power within seven days to review the declaration and return where the commission determines that the said declaration and return were not made voluntarily or was made contrary to the provisions of the law, regulations and guidelines, and manual for the election.

Mr Yunusa-Ari’s action had elicited nationwide condemnation and call for his arrest, which federal authorities have not yielded. Ms Binani’s party APC controls the federal government and all security and law enforcement agencies in the country.

The police, State Security Service and other agencies have declined to comment on Mr Yunusa-Ari’s whereabouts and what they’re doing to locate and bring him to justice for causing confusion. The opposition Peoples Democratic Party has condemned the rogue official’s action as a coup against Nigeria’s democracy.

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