Faleke loses to Gov Bello at tribunal

Faleke loses to Gov Bello at tribunal
June 06 12:36 2016

The Kogi State Election Petitions Tribunal sitting in Jabi, Abuja has dismissed the petition filed by Honourable James Abiodun Faleke, seeking to be declared winner of the last gubernatorial election in the state.

Faleke had challenged  the emergence of Governor Yahaya Bello and asked the tribunal to declare him governor because the election of late Abubakar Audu was almost concluded before he died.

Bello was nominated by the APC to replace its late candidate, Audu.

Faleke ran as deputy governorship candidate with  Audu and they were leading with a wide margin  before  Audu suddenly passed on.

The tribunal  upheld the election of Governor Bello as the duly elected governor of Kogi State.

The chairperson of the Tribunal, Halima Mohammed, who read the judgment threw away Faleke’s petition for lacking in merit.

The Independent National Electoral Commission had declared the election inconclusive and asked the APC to nominate a replacement for the deceased.

After days of intrigues and drama, Bello  was therefore nominated and he chose Faleke as his deputy, an offer the latter declined.

In her judgement, the chairperson of the tribunal said on Monday that the fact that INEC declared the first election held on November 21, 2015 inconclusive meant no governor or deputy governor-elect had emerged.

She also noted that all votes cast belong to political parties.

“It is the political party, through the instrumentality of its candidate that runs for election,” the judge said.

She said Faleke therefore lacked the locus standi to challenge the nomination of  Bello to replace the late  Audu since he was never a deputy governor-elect.

“No right can accrue from an inconclusive election,” she added.