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Lack of compelling evidence wins Bala Mohammed Court verdict



Court rules in favour of Bala Mohammed as Bauchi Governor

The Abuja Division of the Appeal Court has upheld the victory of Bauchi State Governor, Bala Mohammed, following the March 18 governorship election.

The unanimous decision of the panel of three justices resulted in no costs awarded, with the court ruling that each party involved should bear their respective costs.

The challenge to the judgment of the election petition tribunal was brought by the All Progressives Congress (APC) and its governorship candidate, former Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar.

They contested the decision that reaffirmed the re-election of Bala Mohammed representing the People’s Democratic Party (PDP).

Presiding over the case, the justice of the court sequentially addressed the appellant’s pleas.

The first plea, seeking nullification of the election due to allegedly improperly filled forms and booklets, was dismissed. The court ruled that the appellant failed to substantiate this claim with sufficient evidence or specify the affected polling units, rendering their argument unsubstantiated.

Regarding claims of massive non-compliance with electoral laws, the court found the appellant’s evidence insufficient, noting that some witnesses lacked firsthand voting experiences or based their testimony solely on their respective polling units.

Addressing alleged unprofessional conduct by INEC officials, the court stated that as it wasn’t part of the appellant’s plea at the lower court, it could not be entertained.

Concerning allegations of fraudulent cancellations, mutilations, and alterations favoring the PDP candidate, the court highlighted that proving falsification of results is a serious matter requiring substantial evidence.

It was noted that the appellant failed to meet this burden and could not present a genuine result to substantiate the claim of falsification.

Ultimately, the Appeal Court affirmed Bala Mohammed’s victory, underscoring the lack of compelling evidence presented by the appellant to substantiate their allegations, thus reinforcing the outcome of the election petition tribunal’s judgment.