Presidential aide queries Gaya’s victory at APC primary
Special Assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari on Digital Communication, Bashir Ahmed, has challenged the outcome of the All Progressives Congress (APC) primary that declared the member, representing Gaya/ Ajingi/ Albasu Federal Constituency of Kano State, Abdullahi Gaya, as the winner and candidate of the party.
Abdullahi, a serving member of the House of Representatives, was declared winner of the July 27, 2022, APC primary and returned as the rightful candidate for next year’s election after a landmark defeat of his opponent.
In the result declared by the returning officer, Faizu Alfindiki, Abdullahi polled 109 votes to defeat Bashir, who scored 16 votes.
Dissatisfied with the outcome, Bashir rejected the result and dragged Abdullahi and APC before Justice Abdullahi Liman of the Federal High Court sitting in Kano, challenging the process and procedure of the primary.
The presidential aide, who claimed the primary was characterised by irregularities, asked the court to invalidate the outcome of the primary and direct the party to conduct a fresh primary for the federal constituency.
When the matter came up, yesterday, for cross-examination, Bashir told the court that about 80 delegates loyal to him were shortchanged and removed from the list. He said the act apparently denied him the opportunity to secure significant votes.
The first defendant, Gaya, however, refuted the claim that he connived with APC to withdraw the names of delegates loyal to Bashir.
Although Gaya claimed the congress was peaceful and devoid of violence, he told the court that the presidential aide came into the venue of the primary with heavy security men and thugs with the intention to disrupt the process.
Meanwhile, Justice Abdullahi Liman adjourned the sitting to October 25, 2022, for the conclusion of the trial.
Speaking with journalists thereafter, one of the counsels to Gaya, Abubakar Ahmed, said the first defendant was able to display evidence before the court to clarify the discrepancies embedded in the case of the plaintiff.
He said: “The plaintiff denied attending Bayero University and that he never resigned his appointment with the president before contesting the primary.”
In his counter-reaction, Bashir insisted he denied replying to the question on Bayero University because it was not part of the primary content that brought him to court. Bashir equally denied claims that he failed to resign before contesting the House of Representatives seat.