Justice A. M. Liman of the Federal High Court in Kano ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to accept and publish the name of Mohammed Sani Abacha as the authentic governorship candidate of the Peoples democratic Party (PDP) in Kano State for next year’s election.
Justice A. M. Liman gave the order in a judgment delivered on Thursday evening via Zoom.
The judgment was on the suit marked: FHC/KA/CS/204/2022 filed by Abacha, with INEC, Sadiq Aminu Wali, PDP and Shehu Wada Sagagi (Kano State PDP Chairman) as defendants.
Justice Liman upheld the arguments by the plaintiff’s legal team, which included J. Y. Musa (SAN) and Reuben Atabo (SAN), that INEC acted unlawfully to have accepted and published Wali’s name in place of Abacha, who scored the highest votes at the PDP’s gubernatorial primary held in Kano on May 25.
Abacha claimed that after emerging the winner of the primary, he was surprised that some leaders of the PDP in Kano State sent Wali’s name to INEC as against his own, a decision he challenged by instituting the suit.
In the judgment on Thursday Justice Liman found that Wali did not participate in the PDP governorship primary which was monitored by INEC as required under the Electoral Act.
The judge declared among others, that Abacha, who scored the highest number of votes at the Kano PDP primary election and whose name is already with the party as the winner of the said primary election, “is the authentic and lawful winner of the primary election and should be presented with the certificate of return of the third defendant (PDP) as its gubernatorial candidate for the 2023 governorship election.
He issued an order restraining INEC and its agents from recognizing or further recognizing Wali or any other person apart from the plaintiff as the authentic and lawful gubernatorial candidate of the PDP in Kano State for next year’s election.
The judge equally issued an order compelling INEC to recognize the plaintiff as the PDP candidate for next year’s governorship election and publish his name as such thereby giving notice to the whole world that the plaintiff is the PDP governorship candidate in Kano State for the 2023 election.
Justice Liman restrained the PDP, its Kano State Chairman and their agents from parading the Wali as the party’s governorship candidate for 2023 in Kano State.
The judge also issued an order restraining Wali from parading himself as the gubernatorial candidate of the PDP for the 2023 governorship election in Kano State.