There is confusion in Kano following the release of the Certified True Copy (CTC) of the Court of Appeal judgment delivered on the state’s governorship election dispute, Daily Trust reports.
Recall that the appellate court had reaffirmed the sack of the state governor, Abba Kabir Yusuf of the New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP) in its judgment delivered on Friday.
However, in the CTC of the judgment cited by Daily Trust on Tuesday, several rulings of the court in the judgment appeared to be contradictory.
In the lead judgment delivered by Justice Moore Aseimo Abraham Adumein, the judge held in one of the concluding paragraphs on Page 68 that “I will conclude by stating that the live issues in this appeal are hereby resolved in favour of the 1st respondent and against the appellant.”
The appellant in the appeal is Governor Abba Kabir Yusuf while the 1st respondent is the All Progressives Congress (APC) with the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the NNPP as 2nd and 3rd respondents.
The judge went further to hold that “In the circumstances, I resolve all the issues in favour of the appellant and against the 1st respondent.
“Therefore, I find no merit in this appeal which is liable to be and is hereby dismissed.
The judgment of the tribunal in Petition No.: EPT/KN/GOV/01/2023 between: AL PROGRESSIVES CONGRESS (APC) v. INDEPENDENT NATIONAL ELECTORAL COMMISSION & 2 ORS. delivered on the 20th day of September, 2023 is hereby set aside.
“The sum of N1,000,000.00 (one million naira only) is hereby awarded as costs in favour of the appellant and against the 1st respondent.”
While the last three conclusions of the judge were considered to mean that the tribunal judgment sacking Governor Yusuf had been set aside and thus restoring his mandate, the first conclusion that resolved the issues in favour of APC meant that the decision of the tribunal was affirmed.
More confusing, in the consenting judgment delivered by Justice Bitrus G. Sanga on Page 69, the judge held that “My brother in the leading judgment considered the pleadings of the parties, the evidence adduced in support thereof together with statutory and judicial authorities cited, quoted and relied upon before reaching the inevitable decision that this appeal is bereft of merit.
“I agree with and adopt as mine the finding and conclusion reached by my learned brother and also dismissed this appeal and affirm the decision by the trial Tribunal in its judgment delivered on 20/9/2023 in Petition No. EPT/KN/GOV/01/2023.”
Also, the third justice on the panel, Justice Lateef Ganiyu in his consenting judgment held on Page 72 that “In the circumstance, I am of solemn view that this Appeal is liable to be and is hereby dismissed. Iabide with the consequential order as to cost.”
While many NNPP stalwarts in the state said they considered the development as favourable to their course, a lawyer who asked not to be named said the confusion might just be a typographical error, insisting that the reasoning of the court in the preceding parts of the judgment aligned with the well reported decision that Governor Yusuf has been sacked based on his party membership issue.
Meanwhile, a chieftain of the APC, who confirmed the authenticity of the CTC, told Daily Trust that they would be getting the “corrected version”.
He said the court has admitted to the “clerical errors”, adding “it’s typographical error that has already been corrected. We will be getting the corrected version tomorrow (Wednesday).”