The Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja has affirmed the judgment of the Gombe State Governorship Election Tribunal which dismissed the petition filed by the Peoples Democratic Party, challenging the re-election of Governor Muhammadu Inuwa Yahaya of the All Progressives Congress.
The Independent National Electoral Commission had on March 18, 2023, announced Governor Inuwa Yahaya of the APC as the winner of the governorship poll with 342,821 votes.
Muhammad Jibrin Barde of the PDP was said to have scored 233,131.
But Barde approached the Tribunal, claiming that Yakubu’s declaration did not comply with the provisions of the Electoral Act, 2022.
Barde’s lawyers maintained that the PDP candidate scored the majority of the lawful votes cast during the poll, adding that multiple thumb printing and ballot box stuffing took place in nine local government areas of the state in favour of Governor Yahaya.
But the three-man panel of the tribunal chaired by Justice S.B. Belgore, dismissed the PDP application for lacking merit.
The tribunal further expunged witness statements and exhibits of the PDP (INEC forms) for being baseless.
The PDP candidate then approached the Appeal Court for redress.
In its judgement on Thursday, the Appeal Court agreed with the Tribunal that the PDP’s case was void of merit.
“We have considered all the issues and have agreed that the appeal is void of merit,” the Appeal Court held while dismissing the appeal.