INEC, APC urge court to dismiss PDP appeal
Nasiru Yusuf Tsakuwa
The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, Friday prayed the court of Appeal, Kaduna Division, for the dismissal of the interlocutory appeal filed by PDP seeking the court to upturn the decision by the Kano Governorship Tribunal, which denied the appellant the leave to amend its list of witnesses.
It could be recalled that Kano Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal presided by Justice Halima Shamaki, on 16th July 2019 dismissed a request by Abba Kabiru Yusuf to amend the list of witnesses that were enlisted to give evidence.
Counsel to the PDP governorship candidate, Barrister Adegboyega Awomolo (SAN) proceeded to the Court of Appeal sitting in Kaduna requesting the court to squash the verdict passed by Justice Shamaki regarding their request to be allowed to effect an amendment on the list of witnesses.
INEC represented by Barrister Adedayo Adedeji told the court that the appeal is intent at seeking to amend the list of witnesses, after the expiration of the stipulated 21 days, noting that the attempt violates the provisions of the electoral act.
The second respondent, Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, represented by Barrister Offiong Offiong(SAN) told the court that the appellant had failed to file the list of intended witnesses within the mandatory 21 days period.
According to him, the request to be allowed to amend the list been made by Abba Kabiru Yusuf is in contrary to the spirit of Sections 4 and 5 of the first schedule of the Electoral Act, urging the court to refuse the request and to uphold the verdict passed by Justice Halima Shamaki, on 16th July 2019 in Kano.
Offiong further submitted that the Electoral Act mandated the petitioners to file their petition within the period of 21 days, adding that the petition, when filed ought to have been accompanied by the statement on oath of the deposition and the list of witnesses.
The five-man jury headed by Justice Mukthar Huseini informed the petitioners and respondents that the court registry would notify the parties of the date when the court would deliver its judgment.