The recent ruling of the Appeal Court affirming the election of Benue State Governor Hyacinth Alia has been welcomed as a positive development by the Independent Democratic Monitors, IDM.
On Monday, the Court of Appeal in Abuja dismissed an appeal filed by the governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Titus Uba, who sought to overturn Alia’s election.
It is important to note that earlier, on September 23, the Benue State Election Petition Tribunal had dismissed Uba’s petition, citing lack of merit.
Despite the tribunal’s ruling, Uba alleged that the Deputy Governor Samuel Ode was not qualified to be a running mate during the election, and brought his case to the Appeal Court.
Addressing the matter, Justice Onyekachi Otisi, while dismissing the allegation of non-qualification, held that the PDP candidate failed to establish the forgery allegation beyond reasonable doubt, regarding the deputy governor’s INEC Form EC9.
In response to the verdict, IDM, through its Executive Secretary, Dr. James Bawa, stated that the outcome has further strengthened the initial ruling in favor of Alia at the governorship tribunal.
Bawa affirmed, “This outcome has laid credence to the Benue State Elections Petition Tribunal which was also in Alia’s favor. We appreciate the due diligence done by the judiciary in arriving at this conclusion.”
He also urged the opposition to support the governor and emphasized the need for concerted efforts towards progress and action.
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