Court of Appeal Upholds Senator Katung’s Win in Kaduna South
In a significant ruling, the Abuja-based Court of Appeal has affirmed Senator Sunday Marshall Katung’s victory as the legitimate winner of the Kaduna South senatorial election. A three-member panel, led by Justice Moore A. Adumein, unanimously supported the decision of the National/State Assembly Election Petitions Tribunal in Kaduna, dismissing the petition filed by Michael Ayuba Auta, the Labour Party (LP) candidate.
Unanimous Support for Tribunal Decision
The court maintained that the tribunal’s decision to dismiss Auta’s petition was justified and in line with legal merit. Justice Adumein commended the tribunal’s articulateness and thoroughness in delivering its judgment, emphasizing the correctness of confirming Senator Katung’s victory from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
Failure to Prove Allegations: Tribunal’s Findings Validated
Addressing the specifics of the case, the court underscored that Michael Ayuba Auta failed to substantiate the criminal allegation of the unlawful allocation of votes to the winner in the February election.
The tribunal’s findings, stating that Auta did not prove the election’s invalidity due to corrupt practices, were upheld by the Court of Appeal.
Penalty Imposed on Labour Party Candidate
In a decisive move, the court dismissed the appeal and imposed a fine of N600,000 against Michael Ayuba Auta.
The fine is directed in favor of Senator Sunday Marshall Katung, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), and the PDP. This decision signifies a legal victory for Senator Katung, reinforcing the integrity of the election process in Kaduna South.