The Abuja Division of the Appeal Court has confirmed Governor Bala Mohammed’s triumph in the Bauchi State governorship election held on March 18.
The appeal, initiated by Sadique Abubakar, the All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship candidate, stemmed from the tribunal’s earlier affirmation of Mohammed’s win. The panel of three justices unanimously endorsed the victory, imposing no cost and directing each party to bear their respective expenses.
Presiding over the case, the justice in charge addressed the appellant’s pleas one by one. Regarding the allegation of improperly filled forms and booklets, the court ruled that the evidence presented by the appellant fell short of substantiating this claim. The appellant’s failure to specify the affected polling units and elucidate the impact on election results led to the dismissal of this plea.
On the assertion of massive non-compliance with electoral laws, the court found the appellant’s evidence insufficient, noting that some witnesses had not even voted on election day.
The alleged unprofessional conduct of INEC officials was deemed irrelevant, as it was not part of the appellant’s initial plea at the lower court.
Addressing concerns about fraudulent cancellations, mutilations, and alterations favoring the PDP candidate, the court emphasized that such actions, if proven, could result in the annulment of election results. However, the appellant failed to meet the burden of proof, and the court highlighted the absence of a genuine result alongside the claimed falsified one.
In commending the tribunal for meticulous scrutiny, the court ultimately ruled in favor of Governor Bala Mohammed, solidifying his position as the rightful winner of the Bauchi State governorship election.