Tribunal affirms the election of member representing Chanchaga
By Uthman Yawa-Siraja
The National and State Assembly Election Petition Tribunal (NAEPT), sitting in Minna, has dismissed the petition filed against Mohammed Abubakar of the All Progressives Congress (APC) by Aminu Garba of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
The petitioner, who contested the State House of Assembly Election of Chanchaga State Constituency on March 18, 2023, had approached the tribunal challenging the election of the respondent.
The petitioner further claimed that the respondent did not score the lawful votes at seven polling units in Tudun Wada Ward of Chanchaga Constituency, as the elections in the unit were marred with irregularities and other electoral malpractices.
Aminu Garba has filed the petition requesting the tribunal to nullify the election of Mohammed Abubakar on the ground of non-compliance with the electoral act 2022.
The petitioner also requested the withdrawal of the certificate of return already issued to the respondent by the first respondent, the Independent Electoral Commission (INEC), and to declare him the winner.
He claimed in his petition that the form EC8 was not duly signed by the presiding officer, which, according to him, rendered the election invalid.
After reviewing the submissions of the legal teams of both parties, Justice Mojisola Ishaq Sule asserted that the petitioner failed to prove the allegations concerning the non-compliance with the provisions of the electoral act as claimed.
She then dismissed the petition, describing all the evidence and submission tendered before the tribunal as hearsay, which, according to her, could not hold water, and thereafter affirmed the election of Hon. Mohammed Abubakar.
Niger State Governor, Mohammed Umaru Bago, has called on Nigerians to have respect for humanity devoid of religious sentiment.
The governor made the call at the 2nd Public Lecture of the Al-Ansar Centre for Comprehensive Education (ACCE), Abuja, where he was the guest of honour.
He expressed concern over the way and manner in which people treat others because of their religion and said religion was a matter of choice and should not be forced on anyone.
"Islam does not allow you to force someone to follow your religion. The Quran was explicit on this; detesting anyone because that person has not covered their head is not necessary, as no one can force anyone to act in an Islamic way without their consent", he said.
Umaru Bago told his audience that his parents, who were Muslims, sent him to a missionary school, and yet that did not change his faith.
He said he played piano for the school choir and learned a lot about Christianity, and he was happy with the experience.
The governor commended the founder for establishing the school and named it Al-Ansar in Arabic, which means 'helper", pointing out that through the school, the founder was providing great help to humanity.
He therefore urged the founder to make the school open to all, irrespective of religious differences, so that the right knowledge would be impacted to the younger generations.
Chairman of the occasion and former Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Prof. Isah Ali Pantami, represented by the Director General of Nigerian Communications Satellite Limited (NIGCOMSAT), Engr. Tukur Lawal Funtua, applauded the school management for providing Islamic and Western education to the students to better society.
The founder and president of the Al-Ansar Foundation, Dr. Mohammed Kyari Dikwa, said the theme of the lecture was carefully chosen to ensure the children excel and remain disciplined in a disruptive technological society.
He pledged the centre's commitment to in-house capacity building and training for the teachers in the school and those in schools with similar vision, adding that the school intends to be an education resource centre beneficial to all in society.