The political calculations in Zamfara state, seems to have been altered, after a groundbreaking ruling just came in from the court of appeal.
The Court of Appeal which sat in Sokoto, and was led by Justice Tom Yakubu, has in a new ruling, set aside the judgement of a Zamfara High Court on the All Progressives Congress (APC) primaries which produced the party’s candidates for governorship, National and State Assembly elections.
It should be recalled that just in this past month of February, the Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja on this same issue, set aside the judgment of the federal high court, Abuja, which held that the Zamfara state chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) can not field candidates for the general election.
Citing the failure of the Party to conduct primaries before the stipulated deadline, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) had earlier barred the ruling party from taking part in the election in the state.
On January 25, a federal high court in Abuja held that INEC was right to have delisted names of candidates APC presented for the elections. The court ruled in favour of the commission, stating that the APC failed to conduct primaries within the required period.
Afterwards however, a 3- man panel of the appeal court held that the trial court lacked the jurisdiction to have entertained the suit, that it was nothing but an abuse of court process.
The panel held that the suit at the federal high court was filed out of time. It said while the electoral act provided for 14 days to institute a suit after the cause of action had arisen, the suit was filed 15 days after, making the action illegal.
The governor of the state, Abdulaziz Yari, had in the build up to the elections made threats that elections will not hold in Zamfara without APC participating in them.
This new ruling by the Court of Appeal sitting in Sokoto has however upset the balance of the political momentum in the state, as the opposition Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, which has hardly won any sorts of election in the state, if any at all, may seek to use this new ruling to their advantage.
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