Tribunal Upholds Elections of former Niger Gov, Sani Bello, Ndalikali As Senators

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The National Assembly Elections Petition Tribunal, led by Justice Angela Otaluka and located in Minna, the capital of Niger State, has confirmed the victory of former governor Abubakar Sani Bello as the representative for Niger North Senatorial District. Otaluka, in her decision, also ordered the petitioner, Shehu Mohammed Abdullahi, to pay N250,000 in costs.

Abubakar Sani Bello, who ran as the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate on February 25, 2023, was declared the winner over the People’s Democratic Party’s Abdullahi. However, Abdullahi contested the election’s legitimacy, citing irregularities and multiple voting incidents. Through his legal representative, Barrister Hussaini Garba, he asked the tribunal to invalidate Bello’s election and declare himself as the winner.

Justice Otaluka, in her ruling, found that the petitioner had failed to provide sufficient evidence of overvoting, leading to the dismissal of the case. Additionally, the tribunal upheld the election victory of Senator Peter Jiya Ndalikali from the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in the Niger South Senatorial District.

Senator Mohammed Bima from the APC had filed a petition against Ndalikali, claiming that he had legitimately won the election by securing the highest number of votes in the Niger South Senatorial District polls.

Otaluka dismissed Bima’s petition while declaring that the allegations he raised could not be substantiated, adding, “your petition in totality lacks merit and is hereby dismissed.”