The Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja has thrown out an appeal brought before it by Senator Smart Adeyemi, seeking to nullify the governorship primary election of the All Progressives Congress in Kogi State, which produced Ahmed Usman Ododo, as the party’s candidate, in the forthcoming November 11 governorship election in the state.
The appellant court held that the appeal argued by Adekunle Oladapo Otitoju, on behalf of Senator Adeyemi, was completely devoid of merit, and was consequently dismissed.
The court in a unanimous judgment of a three-man panel of justices of the court, affirmed that Senator Adeyemi failed to establish all allegations made against the conduct of the primary election by APC and its leaders.
However, Justice Mohammed Lawal Shuaib, who delivered the lead judgment, settled all three issues in a dispute against Adeyemi.
Justice Shuaib said the allegations of manipulations and falsifications of the primary election results, as stated by Adeyemi, being criminal, ought to have been proved beyond reasonable doubt as required by law.
The Justice also dismissed another allegation by the appellant that he was denied a fair hearing by the Appeal Committee of the APC based, on his petition against the alleged unlawful conduct of the primary election.
According to him, the issue of denial of a fair hearing levelled against the party by Adeyemi was not raised in his originating summons at the Federal High Court, hence, cannot be raised as a fresh issue at the Court of Appeal.
However, in the absence of cogent and verifiable proof by Adeyemi’s counsel, the Court of Appeal held that his allegations remained mere assertions that could not enjoy any probative value.
Justice Shuaib however proceeded to dismiss the appeal for want of merit.
The appellant court consequently upheld the judgment of Justice James Omotosho of the Federal High Court in Abuja, which was delivered on July 12, and also held that Adeyemi did not prove his allegations that Ododo was not lawfully nominated by the APC.