Senate President Ahmed Lawan has once again lost out as the Court of Appeal in Abuja has affirmed Bashir Sheriff Machina as the authentic All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate for Yobe North Senatorial District.
For several months, Machina and Lawan, who represents Yobe North in the upper legislative chamber have been at loggerheads over the ticket won by the former at the primary held on June 9, 2022.
The court, on Monday, upheld the judgment of the Federal High Court sitting in Damaturu, Yobe State, which held that the resident of the Senate, Ahmed Lawan, is not the APC candidate for Yobe North Senatorial District in next year’s election into the National Assembly.
Non-participation in primary: The court had submitted that Mr. Lawan did not participate in the legally recognized primary election of the APC to select its candidate in the election held on 28th May 2022.
Delivering judgment on the appeal filed by the Senate President, a 3-member panel of the appellate court led by Justice Monica Dongban-Mensem, held that the primary election conducted by the party on June 9 is invalid as it was in breach of the constitution.
The APC made a case at the appeal court for itself and its preferred candidate, Ahmed Lawan, but failed to make him a co-appellant.
Mr. Lawan appeared in the case as the 2nd respondent indicating that he and the APC were working at cross purposes while trying to achieve a goal.
The court of appeal directed the appellant (APC) to pay the sum of N1 million to the 1st respondent (Bashir Sheriff Machina) as cost.
For catchup: Recall that about 2 months ago, a Federal High Court sitting in Damaturu ordered the APC and the INEC to recognize Bashir Machina as the senatorial candidate of the party.
Lawan had contested the presidential primary of the ruling party at the same time as the senatorial primary was won by Machina. The Senate president, however, lost to Bola Tinubu, a development that forced him to jostle for the senatorial ticket but Machina insisted that he won’t step down.
Machina had earlier distanced himself from the controversial notice of withdrawal from the race, which was purported to have emanated from him and went viral.
The poorly written letter, which was dated September 4 and addressed to the APC National Chairman, Senator Abdullahi Adamu, said Machina had withdrawn and resigned from the party.