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Shittu pledges to foster peace as Appeal Court affirms his candidacy

By Kehinde Olatunji
19 November 2022   |   3:12 am
Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate for the Ikorodu Federal Constituency seat in the House of Representatives, AbdulKareem Shittu, has pledged to restore and foster peace among the party faithful and his contemporaries.

Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate for the Ikorodu Federal Constituency seat in the House of Representatives, AbdulKareem Shittu, has pledged to restore and foster peace among the party faithful and his contemporaries.

Shittu disclosed this yesterday, following the Court of Appeal’s verdict in Lagos, affirming his candidacy on Thursday.

A three-man panel of the court in unanimous decision dismissed an appeal filed by Awesu AbdulAzeez and the PDP, challenging the judgment of Justice Daniel Osiagor of the Federal High Court, Lagos that declared Shittu the party’s flag bearer.

In his lead judgment, Justice Abdullahi Bayero, aligned with the submissions of Shittu’s Counsel, Patience Udoh, that the appeal lacked merit and accordingly dismissed.

Shittu said victory is assured at the forthcoming general election in 2023, as all plans are on top gear to ensure that all PDP candidates emerge, while expressing his unalloyed appreciation to all party faithful for standing by him all through the court case and ensuring the truth prevailed.

“I’m extremely happy about the court judgment and I will ensure that peace, unity and harmony are restored to the party with aggrieved members,” he said.

Similarly, the court also dismissed a separate appeal filed by the PDP against Shittu’s victory.

It awarded a punitive cost of N5 million against the PDP and in Shittu’s favour, adding that the appeal was needless.

The court also ordered Awesu to pay Shittu the sum of N500, 000 for bringing a vexatious appeal against him.

The lower court had on September 10, 2022, directed the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to recognise Shittu as the validly nominated candidate of PDP for the Ikorodu Federal Constituency.

The court held that the PDP provided no compelling reason for a repeat election or cancellation of its May 24 primary election for the Ikorodu Federal Constituency.

Justice Osiagor held that Shittu won the party’s Lagos State House of Representatives primary conducted on May 24, 2022, by a simple majority.

He also held that the INEC form signed by officials of the party and countersigned by the INEC official had the name of the plaintiff, Abdul Kareem Shittu, written on it as the winner of the primary election.

He held further that there was no cogent reason given by the PDP for a repeat election or the cancellation of its primary election of May 24 for the Ikorodu Federal Constituency.

The court, therefore, ordered the PDP to submit to INEC, the name of Abdul Kareem Shittu, as the candidate of the party in the place of Awesu AbdulAzeez whose name was submitted.

The judge made the order while delivering judgment in Shittu’s suit challenging the PDP’s purported submission of the name of the third defendant in the suit, Awesu AbdulAzeez, to INEC as its candidate for the constituency.

The PDP and INEC are listed as the first and second defendants. But dissatisfied Awesu, and the PDP appealed the judgment.

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