Following the sack of all candidates of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) in Zamfara State by the Supreme Court, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has declared the candidates of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) winners of the Governorship, Senate and National House of Representatives elections in the state.
INEC compliance with the apex court judgment was issued this afternoon by the Chairman of INEC, Prof. Mahood Yakubu, in Abuja.
An internal crisis in the state chapter of the ruling party led to the disqualification of all the APC candidates.
The dispute was between Senator Kabir Marafa and the incumbent Governor of Zamfara State, Abdulaziz Yari whose tenure ends on May 29.
Naija Buzz reports all you need to know about the shocking judgment against the ruling party on Friday.
Meanwhile, here’s details of the press briefing by INEC sent to Naija Buzz this afternoon
INEC Press Briefing on Supreme Court ruling on Zamfara election
1. First, let me welcome all of you to this Press Conference. The reason for addressing you today is to provide an update on the recent decision of the Supreme Court regarding the candidates fielded by the APC in Zamfara State for the 2019 elections
2. It is important to provide a background to the legal process that culminated in the Supreme Court decision on 24/5/19. You may all recall that the Commission issued the Timetable and Schedule of Activities for the 2019 general elections on 9/1/18, over one year in advance. Among other activities, the conduct of party primaries was scheduled to take place between 18thAugust and 7thOctober 2018.
3. Unfortunately, the APC did not conduct its primaries in Zamfara State within this stipulated time and the Commission duly informed the party that it would not be in a position to present candidates for elections in the State.
4. Subsequently, various interested parties, including the APC itself, approached the court over the decision of the Commission.
5. Just before the election, the subsisting court judgment at the time ordered the Commission to include the APC on the ballot for the Governorship, National Assembly and State Assembly elections, which the Commission complied with.
6. However, since the elections were completed, a Court of Appeal judgment and now a Supreme Court judgment have determined that the APC did not conduct valid primaries for the elections in question.
7. In its judgment delivered on 24/5/19, the Supreme Court, having determined that the APC did not conduct valid primaries, said that the votes cast for the party in all the elections in question were “wasted” and ordered the Commission to recognize the runners-up as the winners.
8. This judgment affects the positions of Governor and Deputy-Governor, three Senatorial, seven Federal and twenty-four State Assembly Constituencies.
9. Following the judgment of the Supreme Court, the Commission has met in two emergency sessions and taken briefings from our lawyers and staff on the implementation of the Supreme Court judgment.
10. While the legislative elections (Senatorial, House of Representatives & State House of Assembly elections) are straight forward to deal with because they entail first-past-the-post or simple majority of votes, the Governorship election is determined not just by majority votes but also spread in accordance with Section 179 (2) of the 1999 Constitution (as amended).
11. This means that we had to first discount the votes cast for the APC at the elections and then carefully rework the spread by Local Government Areas based on the new valid votes.
12. In compliance with the Supreme Court judgment, the Commission has now determined the winners of the elections in Zamfara State as follows:
1. GOVERNOR: BELLO MOHAMMED MATAWALLE, MALE, PDP
2. DEPUTY GOVERNOR: MAHDI ALIYU GUSAU, MALE, PDP.
1. ZAMFARA NORTH ALHAJI YA’U SAHABI MALE, PDP
2. ZAMFARA CENTRAL MOHAMMED HASSAN MALE, PDP
3. ZAMFARA WEST LAWALI HASSAN ANKA MALE PDP
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
1. KAURAN NAMODA/BIRNIN MAGAJI UMAR SANI DAN-GALADIMA MALE, PDP
2. SHINKAFI/ZURMI BELLO HASSAN SHINKAFI MALE, PDP
3. GUSAU/TSAFE KABIRU AMADU MALE, PDP
4. BUNGUDU/MARU SHEHU AHMED MALE, PDP
5. ANKA/TALATA MAFARA KABIRU YAHAYA MALE, PDP
6. BAKURA/MARADUN AHMED MUHAMMAD BAKURA MALE, PDP
7. GUMMI/BUKKUYUM SULAIMAN ABUBAKAR GUMI MALE, PDP
STATE HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY
1. KAURA NAMODA NORTH ZAHARADEEN M. SADA MALE, PDP
2. KAURA NAMODA SOUTH ANAS SARKIN FADA MALE, PDP
3. BIRNIN MAGAJI NURA DAHIRU MALE, PDP
4. ZURMI EAST SALIHU USMAN ZURMI MALE, PDP
5. ZURMI WEST NASIRU MU’AZU MALE, PDP
6. SHINKAFI MUHAMMAD G. AHMAD MALE, PDP
7. TSAFE EAST MUSA BAWA MUSA MALE, PDP
8. TSAFE WEST ALIYU NA-MAIGORA MALE, PDP
9. GUSAU EAST IBRAHIM NAIDA MALE,PDP
10. GUSAU WEST SHAFI’U DAMA MALE, PDP
11. BUNGUDU EAST KABIRU MAGAJI MALE, PDP
12. BUNGUDU WEST NASIRU BELLO LAWAL MALE, PDP
13. MARU NORTH YUSUF ALHASSAN MUHAMMAD MALE, PDP
14. MARU SOUTH KABIRU HASHIMU MALE, NRM
15. ANKA YUSUF MUHAMMAD MALE, PDP
16. TALATA MAFARA NORTH SHAMSUDEEN HASSAN MALE, PDP
17. TALATA MAFARA SOUTH AMINU YUSUF JANGEBE MALE, PDP
18. BAKURA TUKUR JEKADA BIRNIN TUDU MALE, PDP
19. MARADUN I FARUK MUSA DOSARA MALE, PDP
20. MARADUN II NASIRU ATIKU MALE, PDP
21. GUMMI I ABDULNASIR IBRAHIM MALE, PDP
22. GUMMI II MANSUR MOHAMMED MALE, PDP
23. BUKKUYUM NORTH IBRAHIM MOHAMMED NA’IDDA MALE, PDP
24. BUKKUYUM SOUTH SANI DAHIRU MALE, PDP
INEC will issue Certificates of Return to the new winners as follows:
i. Governor & Deputy Governor-elect, Senators-elect & Members of the House of Representatives-elect will receive their certificates on Monday 27th May 2019 at the Commission’s Electoral Institute at 2.00pm.
ii. Members of the State House of Assembly-elect will receive their certificates from the Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) for Zamfara State at the INEC State Office in Gusau on Friday 31stMay 2019 at 10.00am.
I wish to seize this opportunity to draw the attention of all stakeholders, but particularly the political parties, to the implications of the Supreme Court judgment on the Zamfara matter.
It is clear that properly conducted party primaries are cardinal to the proper internal functioning of political parties, the electoral process and our democratic system at large.
Therefore, political parties must take very seriously the conduct of primaries according to all extant rules, including the monitoring of the processes by INEC to avoid a repeat of the Zamfara experience.
I want therefore to remind us that the Commission has since 9thApril 2019 issued the Timetable and Schedule of Activities for the 2019 Bayelsa and Kogi Governorship elections by which party primaries are scheduled to hold between the 2nd and 29thAugust 2019.
I appeal to political parties intending to field candidates in the elections to adhere strictly to this and other timelines in the Timetable and Schedule of activities. I thank you very much and I will now take some questions.
Prof. Mahmood Yakubu