THE Adamawa State High Court has lifted the order restraining the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) from going ahead with its scheduled supplementary election in the state.
Justice Waziri Abdulaziz gave the ruling on Tuesday, dismissing the case filed by one Mustafa Shaba, the gubernatorial candidate of the Movement for Restoration and Defence for Democracy (MRDD).
Shaba had complained that the logo of his political party did not appear on the ballot paper used in the initial election held on March 9.
But at the last adjourned date, the lead counsel to INEC, Tanimu Inuwa (SAN) told the court that the MRDD has no locus standi to approach the court because it did not legally nominate Shaba as its governorship candidate.
Inuwa informed the court that INEC had published the names of 29 candidates that would take part in the gubernatorial election in Adamawa State since January 30 and that the candidate of MRDD was not on the list.
He also challenged the jurisdiction of the court to entertain the matter on the grounds that INEC, being a federal institution, cannot be sued before a state high court, and also that the issue at hand, being an election matter, could only be handled by an election petitions tribunal.
In his judgement on Tuesday, Justice Waziri agreed with INEC and dismissed the case accordingly.
Before the initial gubernatorial election was declared inconclusive, the candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Ahmadu Fintiri, was leading in the poll with 367,472 votes, while the incumbent governor, Muhammad Bindow of the All Progressives Congress (APC) had 334,995 as his total votes.
With this recent development, INEC will now go ahead with the conduct of supplementary elections in 44 Polling Units across 29 Wards in 14 local government areas in the state.