By G9ija

The Federal High Court sitting in Lokoja on Thursday ruled that Engr Musa Wada of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) was not qualified to have contested in the November 16 governorship election in Kogi State.

Justice D.U Okorowo in the case of Femi Peter vs. PDP, INEC and Musa Atayi Wada, suit NO: FHC/ABJ/CS/1147/2019, stated this in his ruling.

The suit, which was filed by Femi Peter, a lawyer, public interest litigator and citizen of Kogi State, sought among other prayers an order disqualifying Musa Atayi Wada (the PDP candidate in the November 16, 2020 Kogi governorship election) from contesting, haven presented false information/false document to INEC, in support of his candidacy.

It was alleged that Wada forged the certificate of primary education, which he presented to INEC together with his Form CF001.

It was also alleged that he presented false information on oath when he stated in his Form CF001 submitted to INEC that he had never presented a forged certificate to INEC.

Justice Okorowo held in his ruling that in the proof of claims, the plaintiff supplied letters written by both the Kwara and Kogi state ministries of education confirming that Wada’s certificate of primary education was not authentic.

Also supplied were sample certificates issued in the same 1973, which showed clearly that Musa Wada’s certificate bore no semblance in content and character (including serial number) as those genuinely issued by the ministry of education, Kwara State, in 1973.

Okorowo after analysing the avalanche of evidence provided by the plaintiff held that the latter has proved beyond reasonable doubt that the cerificate of primary education of Musa Itayi Wada was a forged/false document and that he lied in his Form CF001, when he answered “NO” to the question, whether he had ever presented a forged certificate to INEC.

Consequently, the court pursuant to section 31(5) of the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended) among other reliefs granted, disqualified Musa Atayi Wada from contesting in the November 16, 2019 Kogi State governorship election; the essence being that the PDP did not participate or have a qualified candidate at the poll.

Recall that a similar judgement was delivered last month by a Kogi State High Court sitting in Lokoja, which held that the PDP had no candidate in the last governorship election in the state.

Justice John Olorunfemi of the State High Court 4, in a ruling, had said that the primary conducted on 3rd September, 2019 which produced Engr. Musa Wada as the flag bearer of PDP was fraught with irregularities and cannot be said to be fair enough to produce a candidate.

According to him: “neither the claimant, Alhaji Abubakar Idris nor the defendant, Engineer Musa Wada can lay claim to being the authentic flagbearer of the Peoples Democratic Party, since the primary was inconclusive.

Similarly, Justice Olorunfemi further submitted that the second defendant could not convince the court that he actually won the party primary, which was marred with rancour and acrimony, arising from pandemonium, due to sporadic gunshots, that compelled the participants to scamper for safety.

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