The Northern Governors Forum (NGF) has congratulated Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State over his victory at the Supreme Court.
Chairman of the Forum and governor of Plateau State, Simon Bako Lalong, in a congratulatory message to Governor Bello, said the victory is an affirmation of the mandate of Kogi people entrusted on him, which he should work hard to justify.
In the congratulatory message, which was signed by the director of Press and Public Affairs, Mr. Simon Makut Macham, Lalong said, “The Supreme Court judgement affirming your election victory gives you an opportunity to settle down to serve your people and fulfill their aspirations without any distraction. The people have already reposed their confidence in you and are looking up to you for the dividends of democracy”.
Lalong assured Gov Yahaya Bello that governors of the 19 Northern States would continue to support him in all possible ways to ensure that he succeeds.
He also called on the people of Kogi State to rally round the governor and put behind political, religious and ethnic differences in order to create the right atmosphere for the government to fulfill its mandate.
The NGF also urged Bello to continue to play his part in the task of finding solutions to the challenges of the region and the nation at large.
Earlier, the Supreme Court affirmed the re-election of Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State, saying he won the election held on November 16, 2019.
Justice Uwan Musa Abba Aji, who delivered the two judgements of the court with a 7-man panel, led by the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Ibrahim Tanko Muhammad, dismissed the two appeals decided.
Beside the CJN, other Supreme Court justices in the 7-man panel were Justices Bode Rhodes-Vivour, Nwali Ngwuta, K.M.O. Kekere-Ekun, John Inyang Okoro, Amina Augie, Uwani Musa Abba-Aji. They all cut their holiday short to hear and determine the appeals.
The two appeals were filed by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its candidate, Musa Wada, and the Social Democratic Party and its candidate, Ms Natasha Akpoti, challenging the outcome of the gubernatorial election held in Kogi State on November 16, 2019.
The apex court upheld the earlier judgement of the Abuja Division of the Court of Appeal, which had on July 4, dismissed the appeal of the PDP and its candidate, and validated the major decision of the Kogi State Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal that confirmed Governor Bello’s re-election victory.
Though Justice John Inyang Okoro wrote the first judgement that was read by Justice Abba Aji, the apex court resolved the five issues raised for determination against the PDP and Wada.
Meanwhile, the Kogi State governor, Yahaya Bello has said that the judgement of the Supreme Court upholding his election for a second term in office as governor of Kogi State was an affirmation of the landmark victory entrusted on him by the people of Kogi State at the November 16, 2019 polls.
In a statement by Onogwu Muhammed, Chief Press Secretary, (CPS) to the governor, Bello said the Apex court’s decision upholding his victory is an affirmation of the identical positions on the matters taken by the erudite jurists at the Tribunal and the Court of Appeal.
The governor used the moment to pay tribute to His Royal Majesty, Dr.Micheal Idakwo, Ameh Oboni II, the late Attah of Igala who passed on last week. He described the late traditional ruler as ‘a unifier’ who was a great supporter of his administration, a father and a wise counsellor. The governor called on the other parties and their candidates to shun all forms of bitterness and division and join hands with him to take Kogi to the next level.