The Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja has fired Governor of Kano stare Abba Kabir Yusuf in its judgment of Friday.
The panel upheld the verdict of the tribunal led by Justice Oluyemi Akintan Osadebay which sacked Yusuf on September 20, 2023
The lower court had declared (165,663) votes of Yusuf, who contested under the New Nigerian Peoples Party (NNPP), invalid on the grounds that they were not signed and stamped by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
The governor’s votes were reduced to 853,939 by the tribunal in it’s judgement delivered via the zoom while those of Nasir Ganuwa, his All Progressives Congress (APC) rival, remained at 890,705.
Yusuf rejected the tribunal verdict, which he described as “unfair” and “a miscarriage of justice”, and headed to the appeal court.
At the court of appeal while arguing his appeal Abba through his counsel Wole Olanipekun, SAN, asked that the judgement of the tribunal be set aside.
Kicking against the ruling on ballot papers, the senior lawyer said that was the first time in the history that a tribunal would annul an election over non-signing of the back of ballot papers.
He had said the tribunal erred, arguing further that, that was the first time that a political party would file a matter without joining its candidate as a party in the petition and the candidate would be declared winner of the polls.
But Akin Olujimi SAN, counsel for APC, countered him saying the Appeal Court stated emphatically that the non-signing of ballots amounted to electoral malpractice.
In its ruling on Friday, the Appeal Court held that Yusuf was not eligible to contest the election because he was not a member of the NNPP.