Mr. Musa Agah.

By Marie-Therese Nanlong

Jos – The National and State House of Assemblies Election Petition Tribunal, in Plateau State has sacked the Member representing Bassa/Jos North federal constituency in the National Assembly, Hon. Musa Agah of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP.

The tribunal has ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, to return, Muhammad Alkali, of the Peoples’ Redemption Party, PRP, as the valid winner of the February 26th, 2022 bye-election.

The tribunal sitting in Jos on Friday in a unanimous judgment by Justices Hope Ozoh, Khadi Umar, and Zainab Bashir, held that the petitioners had proved their case that the PDP did not validly nominate Hon. Musa Agah, having a subsisting judgment of the High Court that was affirmed by the Court of Appeal, that the PDP had no valid structure in Plateau State to nominate a candidate.

READ: Think beyond 2023 elections – Iniama urges Nigerians

The tribunal held that “The PDP had a faulty foundation, as a subsisting judgement of the court of appeal upheld and the candidate was not validly nominated to stand for the election.”

It further upheld that there was over-voting in the results declared by INEC to announce the winner of the 26 February 2022 bye-election, stressing, “The petitioners have proved that there was over-voting at 27 polling units in Tudun Wada/Kabong…they have equally proven over voting in some polling units in Bassa LGA.”

It was gathered that more than 13,000 votes were deducted from the 40,343 votes declared by INEC in favour of the PDP, therefore, the 1st and 2nd respondents (PDP and Agah) scored 26,338 lawful votes, while the 1st and 2nd petitioners (Alkali and PRP), scored 37,441 lawful votes, and returned as valid winner.

The tribunal however awarded an N3m cost against the 1st and 2nd respondents Hon. Musa Agah and PDP.