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Monday, March 4, 2024

Court verdict: Bauchi Assembly gets leadership vacuum without speaker, deputy Speaker

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From Ahmad SAKA,Bauchi

The court of appeal judgement that sacked the Speaker of the Bauchi State House of Assembly Abubakar Yakubu Suleiman, Deputy Speaker Jamilu Umaru Dahiru ordered for rerun election in 15 polling units has created leadership vaccum in the Assembly.
The verdict is coming when the State governor Senator Bala Abdulkadir Mohammed is making final preparation to present the 2024 budget.

Abubakar who represents the Ningi Central Constituency was sacked on Friday last week while Jamilu’s removal came on Monday.

The Court ordered a rerun in 10 polling units in Ningi Central and 4 Polling units in jamilus Bauchi Central constituency.

The Court also removed another member representing Zungur/Galambi/Miri Constituency, Hon. Yusuf Saidu Ahmed of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). All the affected lawmakers are members of the Peoples Democratic Party. PDP.

A source in the Assembly said that the other members may elect a new speaker and deputy to avoid a vacuum.

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) Voter Education officer Aliyu Shaba said that they are yet to receive the court order that sacked the two leaders but as a law abiding organisation the electoral body is ready for the rerun within the stipulated time. “We have not been served the court order but our lawyer said that we have 90 days.
“We are ready to obey the court. We are going to fix a date for the rerun.”

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Reacting to the judgement, one of the counsels to the Peoples Democratic Party PDP Barrister Aminu Balarabe Isah said
” even thpugh we dont.know how the appeal.court judges arrived in their judgement with due respect to the judges because they have their eyes of seeimg things and undestand it which may differ with our own but it was a suprise judgement, because in Bauchi Central APC complained in 9 polling units they brought four witnesses in four polling units andcabandoned five , and the PDP candidate defeated APC candidate with wide margin , also in Zungur Galambi the APC complained in 12 polling units out of which they brought five witnesses and abandoned seven they were also defeated with wide margin, for now the number of polling units where rerun elections will be conducted is not clear, adding that due to time constraint, the judges only gave a summary of their judgement.
He said that the number of affected polling units will be known when the Certified True of copy of the judgement is made available by the court.
Aminu said no cause of alarm as their candidates will win the election when the electoral body conduct the rerun election.

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On his part Counsel to the All Progressives Congress (APC) Barrister Usman Bappah Darazo, while reacting, said that the judgment was just and fair stating that there were indeed over voting in some selected polling units.

He said the Appeal Court in its judgment has ordered INEC to conduct rerun elections in the affected polling units. Darazo said that the APC is thrilled with the judgment as it is an indication that the 2023 elections in Bauchi state were indeed “faulty”.

The removal of the two leaders Speaker and his Deputy created a vaccum which the leaders may loose their leadership positiion in the House.
The Governor most presentva budget 2024 before the end of December and the house most be presided over by Speaker or his deputy to receive the budget for necessary legislative duty.
A source in the House said members may seat any moment to elect a new Speaker and his Deputy to avoid leaving a vaccum

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