Supreme Court has sacked Ibrahim Shekarau, a former Kano state governor, and affirmed Rufai Hanga as Senator-Elect for Kano Central Senatorial District.
KanyiDaily recalls that Shekarau, a sitting senator was in the New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP) and was nominated to vie for the senatorial position under its platform.
However, before the elections, Shekarau abandoned his senatorial ambition and defected from the NNPP to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in August 2022.
Owing to his defection from NNPP, the party moved to replace him with Hanga, a former senator.
But when the final list of senatorial candidates was published by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Shekarau was listed as the NNPP candidate.
Shekarau, who is going to the red chamber for the second time, was declared winner of the election by the returning officer of the senatorial district, Professor Tijjani Darma.
Owing to the refusal of INEC to accept Hanga as a replacement for Shekarau, NNPP approached the court to seek redress.
The federal high court and appeal court ruled in favour of NNPP while affirming the nomination of Hanga as the party’s candidate.
Dissatisfied with the lower court’s ruling, INEC approached the supreme court.
On Friday, the supreme court affirmed the nomination of Hanga as the NNPP’s authentic candidate and ruled that the electoral body’s appeal lacked merit and substance, and as such, dismissed it.
In a unanimous judgement, Justice Inyang Okoro-led five-member panel of the court faulted INEC’s refusal to replace Shekarau with Hanga after the former left the party for PDP before the election.
Justice Emmanuel Agim, who read the lead judgment, written by Justice Uwani Abba-Aji, dismissed the INEC appeal.
The court upheld the two earlier concurrent judgments by the Federal High Court and Court of Appeal, both in Abuja, that affirmed Hanga as the authentic candidate of NNPP.
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