By Our Correspondent-
A renowned lawyer, Chief Wole Olanipekun, SAN has joined the legal team of the Governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, (PDP), Alh. Isa Mohammad Ashiru to appeal the decision of the Kaduna State governorship election petition tribunal.
The duo of Chief Wole Olanipekun SAN and Bode Olanipekun SAN joins Mr. Emmanuel Ukala SAN, Donald C. DeNwigwe, SAN Chief Ferdinand O. Orbih, SAN, Elisha Y. Kurah SAN to challenge the decision of the lower tribunal at the Court of Appeal sitting in Kaduna.
Alhaji Ashiru and his party are challenging the decision of the tribunal on 32 grounds, for which they believed justices of the tribunal erred in their verdict.
The election tribunal had on September 9th dismissed Ashiru’s petition, challenging the declaration of Nasir El-Rufai of the All Progressive Congress (APC) as the Kaduna State Governor by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
The chairman of the tribunal, Mr. Ibrahim Bako, who read the judgment of the three-member panel, struck out the petition for lack of substantial evidence by the petitioners.
Dissatisfied with the decision of the tribunal, Alhaji Ashiru and his party approached the Appeal Court through their lawyers to set aside the decision of the lower tribunal.
Alhaji Ashiru is also asking the Appeal Court to exercise its powers under section 15 of the Court of Appeal Act in order to evaluate the evidence before it and grant his prayers.
Filing the notice of appeal, Ashiru told the Appeal Court that the governorship tribunal erred in law, breached his right to fair hearing and reached “a perverse decision” for failing to analyze and consider his arguments as canvassed in his counsels’ final written address on the substantive petition.
Ashiru further argued that the tribunal breached his “right to fair hearing, thereby occasioning of InJustice” against him, hence the need to approach the upper court to set aside the lower tribunal’s judgment.
The PPD’s Ashiru also told the Appeal Court in his notice of Appeal that the governorship tribunal “erred in law and reached a perverse decision when it discountenanced the various witness statements identified and adopted by the appellants’ witnesses before it and failed to give effect to the contents of the said testimonies.”