Sokoto: APC closes case, as Tribunal adjourns to July 23

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By Abdallah el-Kurebe, Editor

The Sokoto Governorship Election Petition Tribunal, presided over by Justice Abbas Bawale Abdullahi on Wednesday adjourned its sitting to July 23 for the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to open its defence.

The adjournment followed the All Progressives Congress (APC) and its governorship candidate, Alhaji Ahmed Aliyu Sokoto’s closure of their case.

The APC and Aliyu are challenging Governor Aminu Tambuwal’s declaration as winner of the supplementary governorship election held on 23rd March, 2019, by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

Lead Counsel of the Petitioners,  Dr Alex Izinyon, SAN told the Tribunal that they were satisfied with the ten witnesses they presented before the Court between July 9th, 2019 and July 10th, 2019.

“The Petitioners are satisfied with the ten witnesses they have so far  presented before the Tribunal. It’s the quality that matters and not the quantity.

“We have reviewed our case and we are satisfied. So far, so good. So, we have closed our defence.”

Izinyon had between July 9th, 2019 and July, 10th, 2019  presented ten witnesses, including a star witness , Dr Yakubu Maccido Ahmad, the Assistant State Secretary of the APC.

The Lead Counsel for INEC, Alhassan Umar, prayed the Court to grant them a two-week adjournment, to enable them commence their defence.

The Counsels of the 2nd and 3rd Respondents, Eze Duru, SAN and Aare Olumuyiwa Akinboro, SAN, respectively, aligned themselves with the submissions of the Lead Counsel of the 1st Respondent.

Dr Alex Izinyon, SAN objected to the application of INEC’s Counsel for a two -week adjournment and prayed for a one-week adjournment.

Justice Abdullahi therefore adjourned the case to Tuesday, July 23rd, 2019, for the 1st Respondent to open its defence.

Briefly newsmen shortly after the proceedings, Dr Alex Izinyon said, “the petition is based on a very narrow margin of votes and the grounds of our petition are also very narrow. We have less sufficient evidence, oral and documentary and we are satisfied.”

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