- 3 PDP Senators, 7 Reps to Receive Certificates of Return Monday
- 23 PDP, 1 NRM State Legislators Get Certificates Friday
- Supreme Court Judgement Lesson for Parties –INEC
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) yesterday affirmed Dr. Bello Muhammad Mutawalle, the candidate for the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for the 2019 governorship election in Zamfara State as the state governor-elect.
INEC’s decision followed a Supreme Court judgement Friday, nullifying the elections of the All Progressives Congress candidates into various elective positions in the state, over non-conduct of party primaries. Before the judgement, the APC candidates were declared winners for the governorship, National Assembly and state assembly seats in the state.
The Supreme Court also ordered that the party with second highest number of votes and the required spread be declared winner.
Complying with the court’s order, the INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, said the new governor-elect and National Assembly members of the PDP would be issued with their certificates of return on Monday at The Electoral Institute (TEI) in Abuja.
Yakubu also said that the 24 state assembly members, including a National Rescue Movement (NRM) member would receive their certificates next Friday in Gusau, Zamfara State.
Dr. Mutawalle came second in the March governorship election in the state, behind the candidate of the APC, Alhaji Mukhtar Shehu Idris.
The INEC boss recalled that the commission issued the timetable and schedule of activities for the 2019 General Elections on 9th January 2018, over one year in advance and that the conduct of party primaries was scheduled to take place between 18th August and 7th October 2018.
According to him, the APC failed to conduct its primaries in Zamfara State within the stipulated time and the commission duly informed the party that it would not be in a position to present candidates for elections in the state.
“Subsequently, various interested parties, including the APC itself, approached the court over the decision of the commission. Just before the election, the subsisting court judgment at the time ordered the commission to include the APC on the ballot for the Governorship, National Assembly and State Assembly elections, which the commission complied with.
“However, since the elections were completed, a Court of Appeal judgement and now a Supreme Court judgment have determined that the APC did not conduct valid primaries for the elections in question. In its judgment delivered on 24th May, 2019, the Supreme Court, having determined that the APC did not conduct valid primaries, said that the votes cast for the party in all the elections in question were “wasted” and ordered the Commission to recognize the runners-up as the winners. This judgment affects the positions of Governor and Deputy-Governor, three Senatorial, seven Federal and twenty-four State Assembly Constituencies,” Yakubu said.
He said that following the judgment of the Supreme Court, the commission met in two emergency sessions and took briefings from its lawyers and staff on the implementation of the Supreme Court judgment.
He said that while the legislative elections (Senatorial, House of Representatives and State House of Assembly elections) are straight forward to deal with because they entail first-past-the-post or simple majority of votes, the governorship election is determined not just by majority votes but also spread in accordance with Section 179 (2) of the 1999 Constitution (as amended).
“This means that we had to first discount the votes cast for the APC at the elections and then carefully rework the spread by local government areas based on the new valid votes,” he said.
In compliance with the Supreme Court judgment, Yakubu said the new winners were all members of the PDP except in Maru South state assembly which was won by a member of the National Rescue Movement, Kabiru Hashimu.
On the list issued by INEC, Bello Mohammed Matawalle and Mahdi Aliyu Gusau were the governor-elect and the deputy governor-elect respectively, while the three senators for the state are Alhaji Ya’u Sahabi, Zamfara North; Mohammed Hassan, Zamfara Central; and Lawali Hassan Anka, Zamfara West.
The seven House of Representatives members are Kauran Namoda/Birnin Magaji, Umar Sani Dan-Galadima; Shinkafi/Zurmi, Bello Hassan Shinkafi; Gusau/Tsafe, Kabiru Amadu; Bungudu/Maru, Shehu Ahmed; Anka/Talata Mafara, Kabiru Yahaya; Bakura/Maradun, Ahmed Muhammad Bakura; and Gummi/Bukkuyum, Sulaiman Abubakar Gumi.
Also, the new winners of the State House of Assembly are Kaura Namoda North, Zaharadeen M. Sada; Kaura Namoda South, Anas Sarkin Fada; Birnin Magaji, Nura Dahiru; Zurmi East, Salihu Usman Zurmi; Zurmi West, Nasiru Mu’azu; Shinkafi, Muhammad G. Ahmad; Tsafe East, Musa Bawa Musa; Tsafe West, Aliyu Na-Maigora; Gusau East, Ibrahim Naida; Gusau West, Shafi’u Dama; Bungudu East, Kabiru Magaji and Bungudu West, Nasiru Bello Lawal.
Others are Maru North, Yusuf Alhassan Muhammad; Maru South, Kabiru Hashimu (NRM); Anka, Yusuf Muhammad; Talata Mafara North, Shamsudeen Hassan; Talata Mafara South, Aminu Yusuf Jangebe; Bakura Tukur Jekada Birnin Tudu; Maradun I, Faruk Musa Dosara; Maradun II, Nasiru Atiku; Gummi I, Abdulnasir Ibrahim; Gummi II, Mansur Mohammed; Bukkuyum North, Ibrahim Mohammed Na’idda, and Bukkuyum South, Sani Dahiru.
Professor Mahmood warned all stakeholders especially the political parties, on the implications of the Supreme Court judgment on the Zamfara matter.
According to him, it was clear that properly conducted party primaries are cardinal to the proper internal functioning of political parties, the electoral process and our democratic system at large. He said, “Therefore, political parties must take very seriously the conduct of primaries according to all extant rules, including the monitoring of the processes by INEC to avoid a repeat of the Zamfara experience.
“I want therefore to remind us that the commission has since 9th April, 2019 issued the Timetable and Schedule of Activities for the 2019 Bayelsa and Kogi Governorship elections by which party primaries are scheduled to hold between the 2nd and 29th August 2019. I appeal to political parties intending to field candidates in the elections to adhere strictly to this and other timelines in the Timetable and Schedule of activities.”
We have accepted supreme court verdict –Yari
Governor Abdulaziz Yari Abubakar has on Saturday, on Saturday said his administration and the good and loyal APC members in Zamfara state have accepted the verdict of the Supreme Court of which nullified their votes.
The Governor said this when he was addressing a gathering of the APC members at the Government House Gusau. He said the party members and its supporters in the state had done everything possible to ensure APC did not lose Zamfara state but as Allah wanted, the party lost the state.
He said the members had also done their best in ensuring the viability and capability of the party to continue to hold on to power to provide more dividends of democracy to the people of the state, but as Allah wanted it, the Supreme Court judgement went the way it happened.
Governor Yari therefore urged all members of the party as well as other citizens of the state to remain calm, peaceful and law abiding.
Gov Yari also directed security agencies in the state to be more vigilant to ensure adequate protection of lives and property of the people in the state.
He also promised to carry all members along to the next level and urged them to be more united.
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