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Drama as witnesses confirm irregularities in Plateau governorship election


[FILES] Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof. Mahmood Yakubu

There was a mild drama yesterday at the Plateau Governorship Elections Petition Tribunal when defending witnesses confirmed some irregularities during the 2019 general elections in the state.

The All Progressives Congress (APC) witnesses, Sani Inusa, Munzeli Lawal and Abdullahi Maigoro, said that there were irregularities in results sheets of their respective polling units in Jos North Local Council.

Lt.-Gen. Jeremiah Useni (rtd) of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) is challenging the victory of Governor Simon Lalong of APC at the polls.


Inusa, during cross-examination by counsel to Useni, Mr. Sunday Odey, told the tribunal that the number of valid votes and rejected votes surpassed the number of accredited voters at the Seriki Mangu polling unit where he served as APC agent and that the actual number of valid votes recorded on Exhibit P25 was 346.

Also, when cross-examined whether there were additions of figures or not on the original copy, Lawal, an APC agent at Dilimi polling unit, said: “Yes, it’s true there are additions on the copies.

“The additions were done with the consent of all party agents.”

In a similar vein, Maigoro, also an APC agent, said that the alterations done on the original copy of the result sheet did not reflect on the duplicate copy.

When asked whether there were alterations on the duplicate result sheet as on the original copy, Maigoro said: “No, the alterations do not reflect on the duplicate because we effected them at the collation centre.”

However, Mr. Garba Pwul (SAN), however, told the tribunal that the witnesses that testified were all that they had for the day in their defence and asked for an adjournment to enable them to review their remaining witnesses.

All other counsel in the matter did not object to the application for adjournment.

Chairman of the tribunal, Mrs. H.A. Saleeman, frowned at the application, which she described as too early for the day looking at the time at their disposal.

“We hope this attitude won’t repeat itself more so that we are yet to collect the remaining list of your witnesses and evidence considering the time at our disposal,” she said.

The tribunal adjourned the case till today for continuation of hearing of defence.


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