A Federal High Court in Abuja will on December 4 give judgement in a suit filed by the Governor of Kogi state, Captain Idris Wada and three others, challenging the powers of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to conduct supplementary election in Kogi State on December 5.
Governor Wada is specifically asking the court to declare him the winner of the November 21 governorship election in the state, following the death of the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Mr Abubakar Audu, who was leading.
However, the other persons, Johnson Usman, Emmanuel Daikwo and Emmanuel Igbokwe are asking the court to rule that a fresh governorship election should be conducted in the state.
The INEC had on November 22 declared the Kogi State governorship election inconclusive and subsequently announced that a supplementary election would be conducted to determine a clear winner.
The APC governorship candidate in the election, Mr Audu, who was leading by a margin of 41,000 votes, died few hours before the election was declared inconclusive.
After Mr Audu’s death the INEC asked the APC to substitute the candidate before the supplementary election date, a decision the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, said was based on section 33 of the Electoral Act.
That section reads: “A political party shall not be allowed to change or substitute its candidate whose name has been submitted pursuant to section 31 of this candidate Act, except in the case of death or withdrawal by the candidate”.
Despite the controversies that had come up, with lawyers giving different interpretations to the Act, the APC on Monday chose Mr Yahaya Bello, as substitute for the late governorship candidate.