New Telegraph

Plateau: My Election Was Nullified Without Basis, Gov Cries to S’Court

Governor of Plateau State, Mr. Caleb Manasseh Mutfwang yesterday said the Court of Appeal was unfair to him in nullifying his election and pleaded with the Supreme Court to declare him as the validly elected governor of the state. Mutfwang, who made the submission in his brief at the Supreme Court, said: “The law is settled that wherever there is a wrong, there must be a remedy.” The eight-man legal team is led by a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Kanu Agabi, The hearing of the brief by the Supreme Court is on Tuesday.

The governor argued that he was not given fair hearing by the Appellate Court, adding that while he presented eight points to the Court of Appeal to prove the validity of his election, only one was determined. According to him, the dismissal of the seven issues he raised by the Court of Appeal was against the directive of the Supreme Court that intermediate courts should pronounce on all issues placed before it. He said: “Eight issues were distilled and placed before the court below for determination.

Unfortunately, only one issue (of jurisdiction) was determined by the court below leaving untouched seven issues. “This court has stated in quite a number of cases that intermediate courts should pronounce on all issues placed before it. It should not restrict it to one or more issues which its opinion may dispose of the matter. “This is to give the apex court the benefit of their views in the matter should there be need to consider other issues not determined by the intermediate court.” Mutfwang insisted that since he was not given fair hearing the Supreme Court should dismiss the judgment of the Court of Appeal which invalidated his election.

“It is our further submission that having denied fair hearing to the Appellant, with respect to the Notice of Preliminary Objection as well as a Motion to strike out the incompetent Grounds of Appeal, the decision of the lower Court to dis- miss the same is, with all due respect manifestly flawed. “The implication of denial of fair hearing renders proceedings null and void. See the case POROYE V. MAKARFI (2018) 1 NWLR (PT.1599) 91 AT 153, PARAS. D – E.

“We respectfully urge the Honourable Court to invoke its powers in Section 22 of the Supreme Court Act by upholding the Notice of Preliminary Objection of the Appellant embedded in his Brief before the lower Court and also granting the Motion of the Appellant filed on 2nd November, 2023 before the lower Court by striking out Grounds 1 – 9, 11, 12, 15, 16, 17, 20, 21 and 22 of the Notice and Grounds of Appeal of the 1st and 2nd Respondents.” He said he has attached enough evidence to prove that the Court of Appeal should not have cancelled his election.

“We have demonstrably shown in this brief that, to all intents and purposes, the Judgment of the lower Court, with the greatest respect, has occasioned injustice of unquantifiable magnitude to the Appellant,” he said. The legal team said it has attached enough evidence to prove that the Court of Appeal should not have cancelled his election. “We have demonstrably shown in this brief that, to all intents and purposes, the Judgment of the lower Court, with the greatest respect, has occasioned injustice of unquantifiable magnitude to the Appellant.”

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