The Court of Appeal in Abuja on Thursday reversed the judgment of the Taraba State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal which had earlier on November 7, 2015 sacked Governor Darius Ishaku of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and ordered the All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship candidate in the state, Aisha Alhassan, to be sworn in his place.
In the lead judgment read by Justice Abdul Aboki, the presiding Justice of the five-man panel, the appeal court held that Alhassan and the APC had no legal right to challenge the alleged improper conduct of the primary which produced Ishaku as PDP’s candidate.
The appeal court held that the APC and Alhassan, who is currently Minister of Women Affairs, lacked the locus standi to challenge Ishaku’s qualification to contest the April 11, 2015 governorship election on the basis of alleged non-compliance of the conduct of PDP’s primary with provisions of sections 85 and 87 of the Electoral Act.
They also ruled that only INEC and members of PDP who participated in the primary election has the right to complain.
The appeal court therefore set aside the judgment of the Justice Danladi Abubakar and ordered that the certificate of return issued to Governor Ishaku by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) remained valid.