KANO CPC: INEC CLEARS ABACHA'S SON
The hide and seek between the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and son of the late Head of State, Mohammed Abacha over the governorship slot of the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) in Kano State is over.
Specifically, INEC told a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja that indeed, Abacha, is the governorship candidate of the CPC having scored the highest votes at the party primaries.
Abacha had filed a suit through his counsel, Mr. Abdullahi Haruna, asking the court to declare that the INEC should not recognize any other candidate for the said election other than him.
Reprieve came his way when INEC through its counsel, Mr. Adegboyega Awomolo admitted in its counter affidavit that going by the provisions of the Electoral Act, Abacha polled the highest number of votes at the party primaries and should be declared the winner.
According to INEC, the PDP invited the commission to supervise and monitor its primary election into various offices toward the preparation for the forthcoming general election in April and that as enjoined by the Act, it sent its representative to supervise and monitor the conduct of the primary election in Kano State.
Furthermore, he said from observation from the monitoring exercise, the said election came out with this result that Lawal Ja'afar Isah scored 78,671 votes, while Rufai Sani Hanga got 45,618 votes; Awalu Anwar, 30,410, Magaji Abdullahi, 5,795 and Abacha garnered 144,066 votes.
It was the position of INEC that none of the aspirants or contestants at the primaries have neither instituted any suit to challenge the result of the primaries nor served any process challenging the qualification of Abacha.
In the suit, the CPC is 1st defendant, INEC 2nd defendant, and Brigadier-General Lawal Ja'afar Isah (retd) 3rd defendant.
According to Abacha: 'The result of the election was authenticated by officials of INEC and personnel of the State Security Services as well as officials of Nigeria Police Force. This result was also announced by CPC Electoral Committee Chairman, Prof. M.D. Sulaiman.'
His prayer was 'a declaration that having conducted a direct governorship primary election in Kano State on January 12, for the purpose of nominating the 1st defendants candidate for the Kano State governorship election slated for April 16, it is mandatory for the 1st defendant to nominate the winner of the said primary election, as the party's flagbearer for the purpose of participating and contesting in the governorship election in Kano State slated for April 16 in accordance with the electoral Act 2010 and the 1st defendants guideline for the nomination of candidates.'
Abacha in his averment he said that, 'I have lately gathered from sources in the national secretariat of the 1st defendant that the name of the 3rd defendant has been confidently agreed to be submitted to the 3rd defendant in substitution for me as the gubernatorial candidate of the 1st defendant in Kano State for no just cause.'
Furthermore he said the National Secretary, has launched a media campaign against his candidature and has vowed to do everything to substitute his name with Isah.
'That an interview aired on the Hausa service of the British Broadcasting Corporation (BCC) Radio at 5:a.m on 8th February, 2011, the 1st defendant2s National Secretary challenged my candidature and vowed to do everything to remove me as the candidate of the 1st defendant in the Governorship election for Kano state slated for April, 2011.'
Adding that the continuing efforts of the party's national executive to arbitrarily substitute his name, the national chairman has been reported in a national daily that INEC's acceptance of his name as the rightful candidate of the party in Kano State governorship election slated for April 2011 is wrongful.
According to him, 'since my emergence as the party flag bearer, I have not withdrawn my candidature and I do not intend to withdraw from the general election As the candidate of my party, the 1st defendant, which is the basis on which I have laboriously canvassed support for my interest and programmes to the teeming electorate in my state.'
Abacha, was earlier in court seeking for an order restraining the CPC,from submitting any other name other than his name to INEC.
The matter, which is before Mr. Gabriel Kolawole, the presiding Judge adjourned to Thursday 24, for adoption of written addresses.