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Fake cert: Kaduna Central Senator opens case as tribunal resumes hearing

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Fake cert: Kaduna Central Senator opens case as tribunal resumes hearing

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… Petitioner enters witness box, confronted with Supreme Court judgement

Kaduna State National Assembly Election Petition Tribunal , on Tuesday, resumed hearing in the petition challenging the eligibility and victory of the Peoples Democratic Party Senator for the Kaduna Central Senatorial District, Sen Lawal Adamu Usman by Mohammed Sani Abdullahi ( Dattijo) of the All Progressive Congress (APC) at the Bida Road premises of the Kaduna State High Court.

The proceedings commenced with cross examination of a subpoenaed witness from Great Diamond Academy, Zaria, identified as Yahaya Jibril.

The witness, who is the current Principal of the school, testified that the institution had Lawal Adamu Usman in their register of students that graduated between 2011 and 2012 as well as in the official gazette.

While giving further evidence, he stressed that the school previously known as Diamond Academy was owned by one Adams Olawale Wasiu, who was the initial proprietor that sold it to one Dagama Michael, who is now the proprietor of the school.

The new proprietor, according to the witness, later changed the school’s name to Great Diamond Academy.

He told the court that it was the new owner, who was his previous employer in a different organisation, that appointed him to his new position as the Principal of the school.

The Second witness, who is Provost of Amir Shehu College of Advanced Studies, Richard Ogunloye Ibrahim Phd, who is also a subpoenaed witness, testified that the Senator was not a student at Amir Shehu College of Advanced Studies. To further buttress his point, he quoted what he termed the Senator’s school number and claimed that it belonged to one Halima Ndanusa.

But under cross examination by the 1st respondent’s lawyer, Mahmoud Magaji SAN, he was made to understand that the Senator never claimed to have attended that institution.

Bar Mahmoud expressed shock and astonishment that a school his client never claimed to have attended is now a subject of litigation.

The counsel reiterated before the tribunal that his client attended Amir Abdulkarim Tafiqul Quran and asked the Provost whether the name of his school featured in the petition, a copy of which he was served and to which he answered in the negative.

The documents he brought were thereafter admitted in evidence and were marked as exhibits, and he was subsequently excused.

The third and final witness for the day, Mohammed Sani Abdullahi (Dattijo ), the petitioner, then took the witness box.

After being led in evidence by his lawyer, JJ Usman SAN, his cross examination by MA Mahmoud SAN was intense and robust.

While in the witness box and having been served with marked exhibits, the petitioner was asked where Adeyemo School featured in the documents submitted to INEC or respondent’s statement of claim. He responded in the negative . He was then asked whether he took the first respondent to court on the issue of PDP internal party nomination, which he answered in the affirmative but went further to add that it was dismissed for lack of locus standi.

The judgement of the Supreme Court was availed to him to acknowledge; which he grudgingly did.

On his claim that the election result was marred with irregularities and overvoting and his tabulation of what he termed the real result, MA Mahmoud sought to know whether the tabulation was by INEC or himself, to which he claimed ownership.

He was asked furthermore as to which agency was responsible for the conduct of elections in Nigeria; to which he affirmed to be INEC.

When asked whether he relied on the polling agents from polling units, ward collation and local government collation agents to feed him with the outcome of the election results, he replied that he relied on INEC for the results.

Pressed further if he could be in different local government areas on the day of the election, he simply replied that he went home after casting his vote.

After the cross examination, the petitioners announced the closure of their case.

The tribunal then fixed Sunday July 16 2023 for the respondents to open their defence.