The Taraba State Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal yesterday reserved judgement on the petition filed by Sani Yahaya challenging the election of governor Agbu Kefas in the March 18, governorship election in the state.
New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP) candidate in the election, Sani Yahaya, challenged the victory of Kefas of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
The two parties in the matter adopted their final written addresses during yesterday’s hearing.
The chairman of the tribunal, G.A. Sunmonu said the date for the final judgement on the petition would be communicated to the parties.
NNPP candidate’s lawyer, Ibrahim Isiaka stated that they relied on non-accreditation of voters, improper accreditation and alteration of form EC8A as grounds for their petition.
He added that evidence from Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) showed that the number of accredited voters were far less than votes cast for the PDP.
Isiaka said INEC ought not to have declared the governorship result in Taraba State since there were cases of shooting between the army and the police around the INEC office in Jalingo.
In his submission, lead counsel to Kefas, Kanu Agabi, SAN said the petition challenging the election of Kefas should be dismissed.
He pointed out that the petition was not supported by valid witnesses and facts that are authentic to prove their case.
Counsel to INEC, Emeka Okoro said the petitioners did not do enough to challenge the presumption of irregularity that the petition enjoys.
“In addition, the petitioners substantially abandoned their petition, like what they are asking the tribunal to grant, is the alternative reliefs.
“In other words, they have expressly abandoned the main reliefs they are claiming. That one on its own shows that the petition is not well founded,” he said.
The session was witnessed by Governor Kefas, his deputy, Aminu Alkali; speaker of State House of Assembly, John Kizito; members of the state executive council and party supporters.