Tribunal upholds Mohammed’s election as Bauchi governor

The Bauchi State Governorship Election Petitions Tribunals on Monday upheld the election of Bala Mohammed of the Peoples Democratic Party as the governor of the state.
Delivering judgement on a petition challenging the election of Mohammed, the Chairman of the Tribunal, Justice Salihu Shuaibu, dismissed the petition filed by the All Progressives Congress and its candidate, Mohammed Abubakar, saying the PDP candidate was duly elected with majority valid votes.
Shuaibu said the Independent National Electoral Commission was right both in declaring the March 9 election as inconclusive, and in declaring Mohammed the winner of the rerun election that was held thereafter.
Shuaibu added that the petitioners failed to prove, beyond all reasonable doubts, the allegations of corrupt practices and non-compliance with the Electoral Act by the respondents.
“We shall not go into details in the petition; he who asserts must prove beyond all reasonable doubts,” he said.
He awarded N300,000 cost against the petitioners, saying the first, second and third respondents were to be given N100,000 each.
The three judges on the tribunal unanimously adopted the judgment.
Abubakar and the APC had filed the petition against Mohammed, PDP and the INEC challenging the governor’s victory in the March 23 supplementary election.
They were alleging widespread irregularities in 336 polling units in Tafawa Balewa, Bogoro and Bauchi Local Government Areas.
They are therefore urging the tribunal to nullify the election held in those polling units and declare Abubakar as winner of the election, having scored the highest valid votes or in the alternative order the conduct of fresh election in the affected areas.
On the other hand, the PDP in the state and its candidate, Bala Mohammed, urged the Tribunal to dismiss the petition on the grounds that it lacked merit.