The Supreme Court, yesterday, in Abuja affirmed Malam Rufai Hanga as the Senator-elect for Kano Central Senatorial District of Kano State under the platform of the New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP).
The apex court kicked out a former Kano State governor and former Minister of Education, Ibrahim Shekarau as the candidate of the NNPP in the February 25 National Assembly election.
Delivering the judgment in an appeal brought before it by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), the apex court upheld the judgments of a Federal High Court and the Court of Appeal, both in Abuja, which had earlier upheld the candidature of Hanga as the Senatorial candidate of the party.
In the judgment prepared by justice Uwani Aba-Aji but delivered by Justice Emmanuel Agim, the Supreme Court held that the INEC’s appeal lacked merit and substance and thereafter dismissed it in its entirety.
The Federal High Court and the Court of Appeal had in their previous judgments upheld Hanga as the Senatorial Candidate of the NNPP for Kano Central, following the withdrawal of Ibrahim Shekarau as a member of the party and Senatorial Candidate due to irreconcilable differences he had with the party leadership.
However, rather than obeying the Federal High Court order, the INEC took it upon itself and appealed the judgment at the end of which it lost at the Appellate Court.
Not satisfied with the judgments of the Federal High Court and the Court of Appeal, the electoral umpire proceeded for the Supreme Court to challenge the concurrent decision of the two courts, which upheld Hanga as the lawful candidate of the NNPP Kano Central Senatorial District.
The Supreme Court judgment, therefore, finally laid to rest the knotty issue on who is the authentic Senator elected for the Kano Central Senatorial District in the February 25 elections.
Meanwhile, barely a week to gubernatorial election, Governor Abdullahi Ganduje, yesterday, surprised many when he drove his political rival, Shekarau to his Mandubawa quarters’ residence in Kano
The mild drama ensued when Ganduje and the former governor met at the funeral prayers of late business mogul, Alhaji Sani Yakassai held at Kofar Kudu Palace of Emir of Kano.
Shekarau, who had since parted ways with Ganduje when he left the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), joined NNPP and finally moved to Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) declared support for the former Vice President, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar in the last presidential election.
Although, Shekarau’s candidate, Atiku lost the bid and subsequent came third in the presidential race in Kano, the PDP is also feeding a gubernatorial candidate Sadiq Wali, who is considered political weak compared to other contenders.
Nevertheless, a reliable source disclosed that the sudden political romance between the two political giants was a deliberate attempt to front alliance against next Saturday gubernatorial election.
“If you don’t forget in a hurry, Ganduje was able to attract similar patronage and political realignment with Shekarau in 2018. Shekarau, who was in PDP with Kwankwaso, was hijacked from PDP only to rejoin APC.
“It was the joint forces put together that defeated Kwankwaso’s candidate in 2019. So, I would not be surprised if similar move is playing out again days to gubernatorial election because politicians are friends. There is no permanent enemy in politics,” a source disclosed.
When contacted on the development, spokesman to Shekarau, Dr. Sule Y’au Sule denied any political undertone to Ganduje’s conveying his principal in about a 20-minute drive.
According to Dr. Yau, the duo met at the funeral prayer at the Emir’s Palace and Ganduje requested Shekarau join his car for them to proceed to the burial ground together.
“It was from the burial ground that Malam Shekarau decided to board his own vehicle back home, but Ganduje insisted that since he brought the Senator to the cemetery, he would take him home,” Dr. Yau stressed.
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