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Lawan, Akpabio Lose Out As INEC Publishes Candidates’ List

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The All Progressives Congress may not have candidates for the Yobe North and Akwa Ibom North West Senatorial Districts in the 2023 elections because of controversies over primaries, The PUNCH learnt on Friday.

The Senate President, Ahmad Lawan and the former Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill Akpabio, were contesting for Yobe North and Akwa Ibom North West senatorial seats respectively.

But a National Commissioner at the Independent National Electoral Commission, who did not want to be quoted because of the sensitive nature of the matter, said on Friday that both Lawan and Bashir Machina might have lost out for the senatorial seat of Yobe North in the 2023 election.

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“Both Yobe North and Akwa Ibom North are blank. What we have is Mohammed Bomoi for Yobe South and Ibrahim Geidam for Yobe East. There is no name for the Yobe North for the APC”, the source said.

According to him, the commission did not publish any candidate for APC in the Akwa Ibom North West in the next year election.

’In Akwa Ibom State, apart from North West that is blank even though that man (DIG Udom Ekpoudom) won, in the North East and South Senatorial Districts, and the House of Assembly, they brought names of people who didn’t go through primaries monitored by INEC,” the source said.

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READ ALSO: 2023: Sanusi Clarifies Report On Peter Obi, Atiku, Tinubu

However, Certified True Copy of INEC’s report from the May 28, 2022, primary election trending online on Friday revealed that Machina polled 289 votes out of 300 delegates to emerge winner for the Yobe North Senatorial District, even though the APC submitted the name of Lawan as the candidate of the party for the Senatorial District.

The document was reportedly certified by the commission on June 23, 2022.

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Several calls, SMS and WhatsApp messages sent to INEC National Electoral Commissioner and Chairman of its Information and Voter Education Committee, Festus Okoye, and Chief Press Secretary to the commission’s chairman, Rotimi Oyekanmi, on the matter were not answered.

The National Chairman of the APC, Abdullahi Adamu, had warned of severe sanctions if Machina refused to relinquish his ticket to the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan.

He had claimed that the party was supreme and that it reserved the right to decide who would get its ticket in any election.

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READ ALSO: INEC To Tinubu, Peter Obi: You Can’t Replace Your Running Mate

But Machina, a Third Republic member of the House of Representatives, rejected the substitution of his name in the list sent to INEC.

PUNCH.

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JUST IN: Court Strikes Out Suit Seeking To Void Ademola Adeleke’s Nomination For Osun Guber Election

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Justice Obiora Egwuatu of the Federal High Court, Abuja, has struck out a suit seeking nullification of submission of the name of Ademola Jackson Nurudeen Adeleke as the governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in the last July 26 election.

The judge on Thursday struck down the suit on the ground that the plaintiff lacked locus standi to institute the case.

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The plaintiff in the suit, Awoyemi Oluwatayo Lukman, had dragged the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, the PDP and Adeleke before the court seeking order to void and set aside the submission of Adeleke’s name to INEC on grounds of alleged unlawful action.

The grouse of the plaintiff was that Adeleke’s name was hurriedly submitted by PDP on March 11 as against between March 14 to 18 as contained in the INEC guidelines.

Adeleke’s name having not been submitted within the period fixed by INEC, the plaintiff asked the court to declare the submission, illegal, unlawful, null, and void and be set aside.

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He claimed that INEC must be bound by its official guidelines and that anything done outside the guidelines is against the provisions of the Electoral Act 2022.

READ ALSO: Osun Govt, Adeleke Trade Words Over Alleged Looting

However, in his judgment, Justice Obiora Egwuatu struck out the suit on the ground that the said Awoyemi Oluwatayo Lukman lacked locus standi to have instituted the case.

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The Judge held also that the suit was statute barred having been fixed outside the 14 days stipulated by Section 285 of the 1999 Constitution that all pre-election suits must be filed within 14 days whereas, the instant suit was filed after 28 days.

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FLASHBACK: How Tinubu Named Obasanjo ‘Greatest Election Rigger’ In Nigeria

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The All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential flagbearer for the 2023 general elections, Bola Tinubu, had on February 9, 2019, called the former President, Olusegun Obasanjo “the greatest election rigger” in the country.

The former Lagos State governor made the claim while accusing Obasanjo of rigging the 2007 presidential election which brought Late Umaru Musa Yar’Adua into power as Nigerian president.

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Asiwaju, who made the assertion during a presidential rally of the ruling party at the Teslim Balogun Stadium, Lagos State, alleged that Yar’Adua admitted being rigged into office before he died.

He said: “When he was asked, Umaru Musa Yar’Adua admitted that the election which brought him into office was rigged.

“Who conducted that election? Obasanjo. Obasanjo is the greatest election rigger in this country.”

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Meanwhile, the APC national leader on Wednesday visited the ex-president over his 2023 presidential ambition.

READ ALSO: Details Of Tinubu’s Meeting With Obasanjo Emerge

Tinubu, who is seeking the support of Obasanjo to succeed President Muhammadu Buhari come 2023, met the former president behind closed-doors at the Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library (OOPL), Abeokuta, Ogun State.

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In a tweet after the meeting, Tinubu expressed gratitude to Obasanjo and the Ogun State Governor, Dapo Abiodun for the fantastic welcome accorded him during the visit.

He wrote: “My gratitude to former President Obasanjo, Governor Dapo Abiodun and the great people of Ogun State for the fantastic welcome. Thank you.”

DAILY POST

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Tinubu Mocked For Visiting Obasanjo After Criticising Ex-President

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The All Progressives Congress, APC, presidential candidate, Bola Tinubu has been mocked for visiting former President Olusegun Obasanjo.

Tinubu met with Obasanjo at his residence in Abeokuta, Ogun State on Wednesday.

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The meeting between the Southwest political leaders was believed to be a consultation.

Reacting, Deji Adeyanju, an Abuja-based rights activist, said Tinubu’s visit to Obasanjo indicated that politics is something else.

Adeyanju recalled how the APC presidential candidate once called Obasanjo an election rigger.

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He recalled how Tinubu asked Nigerians not to take Obasanjo seriously for criticizing President Muhammadu Buhari in 2019.

In a tweet, Adeyanju urged Nigerians against fighting themselves over politicians.

According to Adeyanju: “Tinubu who called Obasanjo an election rigger who should not be taken seriously when he criticized Buhari in 2019 today has spent hours with Obj consulting. Politics is something else.

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READ ALSO: Details Of Tinubu’s Meeting With Obasanjo Emerge

“Don’t fight each other over politicians. They are not worth it. I know them very well.

“They are all extremely close friends and business associates. Go and hustle so you can tell them to their faces to Getat! There’s nothing they hate more than that.”

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