Supreme Court Shocks APC Peter Mbah Victory as Enugu Governor Upheld – Landmark Ruling Revealed

Supreme Court Shocks APC Peter Mbah Victory as Enugu Governor Upheld - Landmark Ruling Revealed

Supreme Court Upholds Enugu State Governor’s Election Victory

In a significant legal development, the Supreme Court of Nigeria has ruled in favor of Peter Mbah, affirming his victory as the Governor of Enugu State in the last gubernatorial election. The court dismissed the appeal filed by the All Progressives Congress (APC) and its candidate, Uche Nnaji, challenging the election results.

During the election, Uche Nnaji of the APC secured 14,575 votes, placing fourth in the race, while Peter Mbah of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) emerged victorious with a commanding 160,895 votes.

Nnaji’s appeal was centered on allegations that several opposing candidates, including Chijioke Edeoga of the Labour Party and Frank Nweke Jr. of the All Progressives Grand Alliance, were unqualified to participate in the election due to purported violations of the asset declaration law and other infractions.

However, the Enugu State Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal, presided over by Justice K.M. Akano, dismissed Nnaji’s petition on June 20, 2023. Unsatisfied with this outcome, Nnaji escalated the matter to the Court of Appeal, seeking to have the dismissed petition revisited by the tribunal for a fresh hearing.

The Court of Appeal in Enugu upheld the tribunal’s decision, further rejecting Nnaji’s suit and imposing a fine of N250,000 on both Nnaji and the APC.

In the recent Supreme Court ruling, a five-member panel declared the legal team of the APC and Nnaji’s brief of argument as invalid. The court found that they failed to present convincing reasons to allow the use of an incompetent brief.

In the lead judgment delivered by Justice Tijani Abubakar, it was emphasized that the invalidity of the appellant’s brief also impacted the substantive appeal. Therefore, the Supreme Court’s ruling solidifies Peter Mbah’s mandate as the duly elected Governor of Enugu State.

This verdict from the highest court in Nigeria brings an end to the legal contestation surrounding the Enugu State governorship election, affirming the legitimacy of Governor Peter Mbah’s tenure.

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