In a landmark ruling on Wednesday, the Kano State Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal sacked Governor Abba Kabir Yusuf and declared Nasiru Gawuna of the All Progressives Congress (APC) the winner of the March 18 governorship election.
The tribunal, led by Justice Oluyemi Akintan-Osadebay, deducted 165,663 votes from Yusuf’s total, citing irregularities in the casting and counting of ballots. This left Gawuna with a winning margin of 86,524 votes.
The ruling came weeks after lawyers for both parties made their closing arguments. The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) had originally declared Yusuf of the New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP) the winner of the election with 1,019,602 votes, against Gawuna’s 890,705 votes.
The APC, however, challenged the results at the tribunal, alleging widespread irregularities and overvoting. In its ruling, the tribunal agreed with the APC’s arguments and ordered the withdrawal of Yusuf’s certificate of return.
The court deducted 165,663 votes from Yusuf as invalid, stating that the ballot papers (165,663) were not stamped or signed and therefore declared invalid.