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Zamfara : Atiku, Dickson, Ozekhome hail Supreme Court judgment

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…Congratulate new governor-elect, Mattawale

By Dirisu Yakubu

ABUJA- Presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP in the 2019 election and former Vice President, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar has commended Friday’s ruling of the Supreme Court, which nullified the elections of all candidates fielded by the All Progressives Congress, APC in Zamfara state in the last general election.

Atiku Abubakar GCON

Describing the verdict of the apex court as a victory for the rule of law, the former Vice President said “nothing is as pleasing to the ears of believers, as justice being served in the holy month of Ramadan.”

In a statement signed by his media adviser, Paul Ibe, Atiku lauded the Lord Justices for putting aside the “interests of the powerful and upholding the interests of Nigeria and Nigerians,” adding that for the nation to move forward, the right thing must and should always be done at all times.

“God first, Nigeria second, must be our priority as trustees of the people. When justice prevails, the people rejoice, chains are broken, freedom is multiplied and society is enriched,” he noted.

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He called on the eggheads in the temple of justice to treat all election petitions that will come their way, with good conscience and the fear of God, stressing that once this is guaranteed, the rule of law would prevail.

The ex-Vice President congratulated the new governor-elect Hon. Bello Matawalle of the PDP and the people of Zamfara, even as he assured the people that peace would return to the place in no distant time.

Similarly, Bayelsa state governor and newly-elected chairman of the PDP Governors’ Forum, Seriake Dickson has congratulated former federal lawmaker, Dr. Bello Mohammed Matawalle, on his return as the governor-elect for Zamfara and the victory of other PDP candidates in the state, following Friday’s ruling by the Supreme Court.

The governor also congratulated the leaders of the party and its teeming supporters in Zamfara for their dedication, commitment and resilience which according to him culminated in the party’s victory at the polls.

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He added that the ruling by the five-member panel of the Supreme Court read by Justice Paul Adamu Galinji, which annulled all the votes of the APC and returned Matawalle as winner of the governorship election was “victory for justice and democracy in action.”

“I hereby congratulate the gubernatorial candidate of the PDP in Zamfara State, Dr. Bello Mohammed Mutawalle, on his victory at the Supreme Court whose (sic) ruling returned him as the winner of the gubernatorial election in the state.

“I also commend the leaders of the PDP and the teeming supporters of the party in Zamfara for their dedication and resilience. And very importantly, I thank the Judiciary, once again, for standing up to the expectations of the well-meaning Nigerian public as a strong, impartial arbiter that could be trusted.

The governor commended the national chairman of the PDP, Prince Uche Secondus, for what he called his exemplary display of leadership which has resulted in several victories for the PDP even during “the prevailing circumstances.”

On his part, famous constitutional lawyer and human rights activist, Mike Ozekhome, SAN, said the ruling of the apex court would go a long way in deepening democracy in the country. Ozekhome, who was the lead counsel of the Kabiru Marafa-led faction of the APC seeking the nullification of the party’s primaries, said justice has been served and rightfully so.

In his reaction, the legal luminary noted: “What the apex court has done today (Friday) is to deepen, widen and strengthen democracy and our democratic precepts. It shows that parties must maintain internal democracy and cannot whimsically, capriciously and arbitrarily operate outside their constitution, guidelines, the Electoral Act and the Constitution.

“The Supreme Court has redefined our jurisprudence by showing that when a party damages its primaries, it can never reap the proceeds of its illegalities. That is why and how the PDP that came second has today produced the governor, all Senators, all House of Representatives and House of Assembly members today in one fell swoop.”

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