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The Kogi State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal Sitting in Abuja has adjourned its hearing to Monday, 14th March 2024.

This followed the Court of Appeal Judgement that set aside its inspection order and expunged paragraphs ‘g’, ‘k’ and ‘n’ of the earlier ruling.
Counsel to the petitioner, Okutepa SAN, moved for the business of the day, but the counsel to the first respondent, Kanu Agabi, SAN, drew the attention of the Tribunal to the Court of Appeal judgement and an affidavit to that effect.
This necessitated the adjournment for the court to take the application.
Meanwhile, the issue of tendering INEC devices and others slated for today (Monday) did not proceed given the aforementioned.
The Appeal Court sitting in Abuja had, on Friday, set aside the inspection Order granted the Candidate of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) by the Governorship election Petition Tribunal sitting in Abuja.
The Governorship election petition Tribunal had, on November 25, 2023, granted an Exparte Order, allowing the Social Democratic Party and its candidate in the 11th November 2023 Governorship election to carry out forensic examination of all the Bimordal Voters Accreditation system (BVAS) used in the Governorship election, among other sundry reliefs.
In a ruling delivered by a three-man panel of justices of the Court of Appeal, led by Justice J.O.K. Oyewole, with Justices A. I. Banjoko and A.B. Mohammed concurring, the Court of Appeal set aside the inspection order, having gone outside the province of the Electoral Act.
The Court of Appeal ordered that, while inspection is allowed under the Electoral Act, it must be jointly carried out with the respondent and the scope of the inspection should be within the strict limit allowed under the Electoral Act.
Social Democratic Party was represented at the Court of Appeal by Pius Akubo, SAN; the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) was represented by Chief Kanu Agabi, SAN; Governor Usman Ahmed Ododo was represented by J.B. Daudu, SAN, while the All Progressives Congress was represented by Abdulwahab Muhammed, SAN.
“The ex parte order made by the Trial Tribunal on the 25th November 2023 at the instance of the 1st and 2nd Respondents are within the jurisdictional competence of the said Tribunal. However, paragraphs ‘g’, ‘k’ and ‘n’ thereof are beyond the scope of Section 146 (1) of the Electoral Act 2022. The said paragraphs ‘g’, ‘k’ and ‘n’ are hereby expunged.
“The inspection purportedly done pursuant to the said Orders of the trial Tribunal without the presence of the Appellant violates paragraph ‘h’ of the said orders and it is hereby set aside,” the Appeal Court held.
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