The supreme court on Monday affirmed Ahmed Lawan, senate president, as the All Progressives Congress (APC) senatorial candidate for Yobe North.
In a majority judgment delivered by Justice Centus Nweze, the apex court allowed the appeal filed by the APC against Bashir Machina’s candidature.
The lead majority judgment of three justices against two, set aside the verdict of the Court of Appeal Abuja Division on November 28, 2022, affirmed Bashir Sherrif Machina as the authentic APC senatorial candidate for Yobe North in the forthcoming general elections.
However, Justices Adamu Jauro and Emma Agim disagreed with the lead decision and consequently entered a dissent judgment, by dismissing the appeal of APC and affirming the concurrent findings of fact of the trial and appellate courts.
Justice Monica Dongban-Mensen, who presided over a three-member panel of the appellate court, gave the affirmation in an appeal by the APC (appellant) challenging the decision of Justice Fadimatu Aminu of the Federal High Court Damaturu, which had on Sept. 28, 2022, declared Machina as the winner of the primary election organised by the party on May 28, 2022.
However, having lost the APC presidential primary to Bola Tinubu, the party opted for Lawan to replace Machina.
But Machina insisted that he would not withdraw for the Senate President.
In the face of the controversy, the APC submitted the Senate President’s name to the Independent National Electoral Commission as its senatorial candidate for Yobe North.
Not satisfied with the decision of his party, Machina headed to court to seek redress.
Specifically, in his suit, Machina asked the court to declare him as the validly elected senatorial candidate of the APC for Yobe North Senatorial District.
Justice Aminu had nullified the parallel primary election that produced Lawan on June 9, 2022, insisting that the National Working Committee of the APC conducted a valid primary election on May 28, which Bashir Sheriff Machina won.
Consequently, the trial judge ordered the APC to forward the name of Machina to INEC as the authentic winner of the primary election for Yobe North.