The Supreme Court has scheduled judgment for December 9 in an appeal by some members of the All Progressives Party (APC) challenging the emergence of Aminu Tambuwal as the candidate of the party for the last governorship election in Sokoto State.
A panel of the court, led by Justice Bode Rhodes-Vivour fixed the date Tuesday after parties adopted their written briefs in the case.
Respondents in the appeal are the APC, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and Hon Aminu Waziri Tambuwal.
The appellants Alhaji Umaru Dahiru and Barrister Aliyu Abubakar Sanyinna, who were also governorship aspirants of the APC in 2015 are challenging the propriety of Tambuwal’s nomination by the APC as its governorship candidate.
They alleged that delegates list for the primary election of the APC conducted on December 4, 2014 at Giginya Stadium, Sokoto was swapped
The appellants want the court to, among others, determine whether Tambuwal was nominated in compliance with provisions of the Electoral Act 2010 and the APC 2014 guidelines for the nomination of candidates for elective offices.
While adopting the appellants’ brief, their lawyer, Ikoro M. Ikoro urged the court to reverse the decision of the Court of Appeal
The Court of Appeal had held that the appellants’ suit had become academic exercise by virtue of the election of Tambuwal in the April 11, 2015 governorship poll.
He argued that the Appeal Court erred in law by holding that their joint suit has no life to sustain it simply because of the conducted general election.
He further argued that the April 11, 2015 general election cannot take life out of their case or render it academic exercise because the suit had been filed on January 27, 2015 long before the general election was conducted.
Ikoro, who gave a background to his client’s case, alleged that the respondents delayed the hearing of the case at the trial court through frivolous applications.
He contended that since the delay was at the instance of the respondents, they (the respondents) should not be allowed to benefit from the delay which made expeditious hearing of the case impossible at the trial court.
The appellants prayed court to invoke its power under Section 22 of the Supreme Court Act to resolve the issues in contention as a court of first instance in the circumstances of the case.
Tambuwal’s lawyer, Sunday Ameh (SAN) argued that the reliefs sought by the appellants at the trial court have been overtaken by event since the election has been held and Tambuwal declared as winner of the April 11, 2015 election.
Ahmeh urged the court to dismiss the appeal on the ground that it had become pure academic issue without any live.
Lawyer to the APC, Jibrin Okutepa (SAN) argued in similar manner.