The Peoples Redemption Party (PRP) has sued Bala Mohammed, Bauchi governor, over the alleged double nomination.
On June 4, Mohammed was elected as the flagbearer of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for the 2023 governorship election after a failed attempt at securing his party’s presidential ticket.
TheCable had reported how Ibrahim Kassim, secretary to the Bauchi state government, polled 655 votes to clinch the PDP governorship ticket on May 28.
Kassim had resigned as the SSG to contest the Bauchi governorship ticket in line with section 84(12) of the electoral act, but later withdrew from the race, citing “personal reasons”.
At the party’s presidential primary, the Bauchi governor finished in fifth position, securing only 20 votes, while former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar polled 371 votes to become the PDP presidential candidate.
In the suit marked FHC/ABJ/CS/1302, PRP is praying the court to void Mohammed’s candidacy in the forthcoming governorship election.
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the PDP are also joined as defendants in the suit.
The PRP is contending that having participated as a candidate in the PDP presidential primary on May 28, and later as a candidate in the PDP’s governorship primary in Bauchi on June 4, Mohammed is in violation of section 177(c) of the constitution as well as sections 84(13) and 115(d) of the Electoral Act 2022.
The party wants the court to, among others, restrain INEC from recognising Mohammed as a candidate of the PDP, and to bar him from further parading himself as the PDP candidate for the governorship election.
In a supporting affidavit, Ahmed Farouk, the PRP governorship candidate in Bauchi, said no law allows a candidate to sign two nomination forms for presidential and governorship primaries “which are two constituencies, at the same time and in the same election period in the 2023 general election”.
“Where a political party fails to comply with the provisions of relevant laws in the conduct of its primaries, its candidate for election shall not be included in the election for the particular position in issue,” the affidavit reads.
In another suit marked FHC/ABJ/CS/1303, the PRP wants the court to disqualify Sodique Abubakar, a former chief of air staff, and Shehu Musa, as the governorship and deputy governorship candidates of the All Progressives Congress (APC), respectively.
The PRP argued that Musa violated the constitution and Electoral Act by allegedly participating in the house of representatives primary held by the APC on May 28, which he won and subsequently, in the governorship primary held on June 4, after which he was nominated as the party’s deputy governorship candidate.
Similarly, in another suit marked FHC/ABJ/CS/1304, the PRP is seeking an order of the court voiding the nomination of Haliru Jika as NNPP’s governorship candidate on the grounds that he was not a valid member of the NNPP when he was nominated as the party’s candidate.
Jika, who currently represents Bauchi central senatorial district, was said to have participated in the May 26 governorship primary of the APC in Bauchi which was won by Abubakar, but he later defected to the NNPP to pick the governorship ticket.