GPN candidate withdraws petition challenging Ganduje’s victory ‘to allow peace reign’

Just days to the May 29 inauguration, governorship candidate of Green Party of Nigeria (GPN) Abdulkarim Abdussalam has withdrawn his petition challenging Governor Abdullahi Ganduje’s victory in the 2019 elections.

According to an eight-paragraph statement, dated May 17th, written by Abdussalam’s counsel, Ibrahim Sa’ad, he withdrew the petition to allow peace reign in Kano state. He cited Section 1 (a) and (b) of Electoral Act to withdraw the petition.

Chairman of Kano State Election Tribunal, Justice Halima Mohammed, while delivering judgment on Wednesday granted the request of Abdussalam’s counsel and struck out the petition.

The tribunal therefore has just one governorship case between PDP candidate, Abba Kabir-Yusuf and Governor Abdullahi Ganduje to resolve.

During the inaugural sitting of the governorship Election Petition Tribunal at the Kano state high court complex, Justice Mohammed assured a level playing ground to all political parties to present their case before the tribunal.

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She also warned that the tribunal will not tolerate the use of technicalities from counsels to stultify speedy dispensation of justice.

Speaking to journalists she said, “To the members of the fourth Estate of the realm, we expect balanced reporting, where necessary, as any form of misreporting, which has the tendency of heating up the polity, will be interpreted, as a tacit hovering within the precinct of contempt.

“Election petition being sui generis (that is being time bound) and guided by its own peculiar rules of procedures, unlike the regular cases, the tribunal shall therefore not tolerate the employment of technicalities to stultify speedy dispensation of justice, as we do not intend to be caught up in the web of expired petition, due to effusion of time,” she said.

Justice Muhammad, called on the Kano state Attorney- General and Commissioner of Justice, Ibrahim Mukhtar to use his office to guide the bar to adhere to the ethics of the profession.

She added that the tribunal expects the state Chairman of Nigeria Bar Association (NBA) to also partner, with the Attorney General to ensure decorum and good conduct of counsels during court proceedings.

“To the police, DSS and other paramilitary agencies, involved in the provision of security for the tribunal, we expect that you be on the alert and exercise due diligence in the execution of your duties.

“To the members of the political parties, the tribunal having guaranteed a level playing ground, we do not expect anyone to heat up the polity by doing acts that may be inimical to the security of the tribunal and its members,” Justice Muhammad warned.”

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