Breaking News
Translate

APC candidates challenge signatures forged in bit to replace their candidature

By Abdulwahab Abdulah
Two candidates of the Lagos State House of Assembly vying under the platform of the ruling All Progressive Congress, APC, have approached the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja to challenge the alleged planned to substitute their names through forged letters to the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, claiming their withdrawal from the race.

President Buhari presenting the Party Flag to Osun APC Gubernatorial Candidate Gboyega Oyetola accompanied by other party leaders during the Grand Finale of APC Gubernatorial Campaign Rally in Osun State on 18th Sep 2018

The candidates, Olanrewaju Suleiman Afinni, candidate for Lagos Island Constituency 11, and Hon. Olumoh Saad Lukman, candidate for Ajeromi/Ifelodun Constituency 01, have instituted summons against the party and some individuals, denying ever submitting letters announcing their withdrawal.

In their separate originating summons designated with numbers: FHC/ABJ/CS/ 1479/18 and FHC/ABJ/CS/ 1480/18, brought pursuant to sections 33,35 & 37 of the Electoral Act 2010(as amended), they are asking the court to restrain the respondents from going ahead with their planned, especially when the alleged withdrawal letters were forged.

According to the letters submitted to INEC on their behalf, Afinni and Lukman are said to have withdrawn from the race “after due consultations with Lagos State Stakeholders”. However, the candidates say this is not true, insisting that they never wrote any letter or gave up their tickets.

They have accused the party of forging their signatures in forms sent to INEC, to request the withdrawal of their names from its list.

According to the letters submitted to INEC on their behalf, Afinni and Lukman are said to have withdrawn from the race “after due consultations with Lagos State Stakeholders”. However, the candidates say this is not true, insisting that they never wrote any letter or gave up their tickets.

Their withdrawal forms submitted to INEC were attached to a cover letter dated November 30, 2018 and signed by Honourable Mala Buni, APC National Secretary and Otunba Niyi Adebayo, APC Deputy National Chairman (S). Adebayo signed the letter on behalf of the APC National Chairman.

However, the duo of Afinni and Lukman insist that the Notice of Withdrawal Forms CF004C submitted on their behalf were done without their knowledge.

Afinni’s name was replaced with one Giwa Shakirudeen Olushola, while Lukman’s name was replaced with one Hon. Famakinwa Adedayo Olufemi.

Protesting the replacement, the aspirants have written letters through their counsel, Madyan Legal Consult, informing INEC of the “clandestine plans by some highly placed persons to steal their mandate by substituting their names with those of other people”.

The letter by Maydan Legal Consult on behalf of both candidates, dated November 30, 2018, noted that the plan is to forge their signatures on “a purported notice of withdrawal of candidature so as to unlawfully substitute” their names with the names of some unknown persons.

They have also written individual letters to the APC National Chairman. While noting that he won the Lagos State primaries held on October 5, 2018, like Lukman, Afinni stressed that he didn’t know how the withdrawal of their candidature came about.

The letter addressed to the APC National Chairman read: “I know for a surety that I did not write the letter at all, neither did I sign same. I also know that I did not deliver the letter to any of the offices of our great party, neither did I instruct any person to deliver the letter to any of the offices of our great party on my behalf”.


Disclaimer

Comments expressed here do not reflect the opinions of vanguard newspapers or any employee thereof.