Justice I. G. Mbaba, of the Court of Appeal sitting in Makurdi, the Benue State capital has dismissed the separate appeals filed by the PDP and Christopher Adaji for lacking in merit.
The Appeal court ruling upholds the judgement of the National and State House of Assembly’s Election Tribunal, which nullified the election of Benue state Assembly Deputy Speaker, Christopher Adaji, as the lawmaker representing Ohimini state constituency on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
Justice Mbaba agreed with the decision of the Tribunal that the declaration and return of Adaji by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) as winner of the 2019 Ohimini State Constituency election, without rerun in Otega and Ogadagba was invalid by reason of non- compliance with Electoral Act 2010 (as amended).
He therefore, issued an order directing INEC to conduct fresh election in the two polling units within 90 days from the day of the judgment, as earlier ordered by the Tribunal.
Justice Mbaba further awarded the cost of N200, 000 only in each of the appeals against the appellants as cost.
INEC had returned Adaji winner with a margin of 397 votes, which is less than 1, 056 votes cancelled in the two polling units complained of at the end of the March 9, 2019, Obimini State Constituency election.