The Abuja Division of the Court of Appeal, on Friday reserved judgment in an appeal in an appeal pertaining to the All Progressives Congress’ Yobe North Senatorial District.
Justice Monica Dongban-Mensen, the President of the Court of Appeal, who presided over a 3-man panel, reserved judgement after taking arguments from lawyers on Friday.
Ahmad Lawan, Senate President, is challenging the decision of Justice Fadimatu Aminu of the Federal High Court Damaturu, which on September 28, 2022, declared Bashir Machina as the authentic APC senatorial candidate of Yobe North.
Machina won the primary election organised by the APC in May 2022, while Lawan opted to contest the presidential primary election organised by the APC in June.
Lawan lost the APC presidential ticket to former Lagos governor, Bola Tinubu.
However, Machina was asked to step down for Lawan but he insisted that he would not withdraw for the Senate President.
Amid the controversy, the APC submitted the Senate President’s name to the Independent National Electoral Commission as its senatorial candidate for Yobe North.
Angered by the development, Machina headed to court to seek redress. Specifically, Machina in his suit asked the court to declare him as the validly elected senatorial candidate of the APC for the 2023 election.
Justice Aminu nullified the parallel primary election that produced Lawan on June 9, 2022.
Consequently, the trial judge ordered the APC to forward the name of Machina to INEC as the authentic winner of the primary held in May.
Earlier this week, the Campaign Organisation of Machina accused Lawan of talking out of both sides of his mouth regarding the legal tussle over the senatorial ticket of APC in the district.
Lawan had publicly announced that he will not appeal the judgement of the Federal High Court, Damaturu which declared Machina as the rightful senatorial candidate of the APC for Yobe North.
But Lawan was said to have been secretly putting pressure on the APC to appeal the judgement of the trial court using some of his cronies to achieve his target.
In a statement issued in Abuja on Wednesday, the spokesman for Machina Campaign Organisation, Husaini Mohammed Isa said they were surprised to learn that Senate President Lawan still has a hand in the appeal despite his public statement denying such.
“It smacks of a double standard for the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan to be working behind the scene using some of his associates to appeal the judgement of the Federal High Court, Damaturu even when he had publicly declared that he will not appeal the judgement.
“By this action, the Senate President has proven to be a man who loves power more than his character,” the statement said.