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Tribunal: Kano REC risks arrest for denying Abba Yusuf access to electoral materials

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Ibrahim Ramalan
Ibrahim Ramalan is a graduate of Mass Communications from the Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) Zaria. With nearly a decade-long, active journalism practice, Mr Ramalan has been able to rise from a cub reporter to the exalted position of an editor; first as Arts Editor with the Blueprint Newspapers before resigning in 2019; second and presently as an Associate Editor of the Daily Nigerian online newspaper. He can be reached via [email protected], or www.facebook.com/ibrahim.ramalana, or @McRamalan on Twitter.
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The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, has asked the Kano State Governorship Election Tribunal to order for the arrest of the state’s Resident Electoral Commissioner of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, Prof. Riskuwa Arabi, for defying a court order directing the commission to allow the party access electoral materials.

The call for the arrest of Mr Riskuwa was raised through an application entered by Chief Asiwajo Awomolo, SAN, the leading counsel to the PDP candidate for Kano State governorship election, Abba Yusuf.

Mr Awomolo also sought for approval from the tribunal for the provision of an additional list of witnesses.

Similarly, lawyers of Governor Abdullahi Ganduje had requested the tribunal to dismiss the case between the governor and the PDP’s Abba Yusuf, insisting that the party did not submit its petition within the stipulated period of 21 days as claimed.

Responding on the application, Mr Awomolo, SAN proved to the court that the petition was filed in accordance with provisions of the Electoral Act.

Mr Yusuf’s lawyers argued that the 21-day ultimatum does not begin from the day the election was declared inconclusive, adding there was no declaration of a winner by INEC till after the re-run.

According to them, the 21-day ultimatum begins from March 25, 2019.

However, the presiding judge, Justice Halima Shamaki Mohammed, adjourned till Saturday, July 13, 2019 to allow the dependents respond on the two applications within one week, while the petitioners counter response in three days before the court decide on the applications.

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