The tribunal declared Yusuf Gawuna of the All Progressives Congress (APC) as the rightful winner of the March 18 governorship election in the state.
The Tribunal invalidated 165,663 votes cast for Yusuf under the New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP) because they lacked the necessary signatures or stamps from the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
This action reduced the governor’s votes to 853,939 while his APC rival, Nasir Ganuwa, retained 890,705 votes.
Yusuf disagreed with the tribunal’s decision, calling it “unfair” and “a miscarriage of justice.”
He appealed the ruling at the court, with his legal representative, Wole Olanipekun, SAN, requesting the tribunal’s judgment to be overturned.
Olanipekun argued against the tribunal’s decision regarding the unsigned ballot papers, stating it was unprecedented for an election to be annulled solely due to the lack of signatures on the back of ballot papers.
He highlighted this as the first instance where a political party filed a case without involving its candidate in the petition, and yet, the candidate was declared the winner.
However, Akin Olujimi SAN, representing the APC, countered Olanipekun’s argument.
He affirmed that the Appeal Court explicitly stated that the absence of signatures on ballots constituted electoral malpractice.