The All Progressive Congress (APC) candidate for the Adamawa governorship election, Senator Aisha Binani Dahiru, has filed a motion exparte before the Federal High Court in Abuja. The motion seeks a judicial review of the administrative decision made by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on April 16th regarding her declaration as the winner of the governorship elections held on March 18 and the supplementary poll of April 15.
Senator Binani is requesting an order of prohibition and certiorari to restrain INEC and its agents from making any progress towards announcing the election winner until her application for judicial review is resolved.
According to the grounds presented in the application, the Senator claimed that she was declared the winner of the elections by INEC (the first respondent), following the collation of results. However, the People Democratic Party (PDP) and its candidate, Governor Ahmadu Fintiri (the 2nd and 3rd respondents), allegedly engaged in a physical altercation that resulted in the assault of an INEC staff and public disturbance.
According to the her, the cancellation of the initial declaration by INEC was not within their jurisdiction as only the election petition tribunal has the authority to do so.
Senator Binani argues that INEC exceeded its authority by annulling her declaration, as only the election petition tribunal has the jurisdiction to rule on election results.
According to documents submitted to the court, Senator Binani’s legal team, led by Senior Advocate of Nigeria Hussaini Zakariyau, argues that the purpose of judicial review is to allow higher courts to oversee the actions and decisions of lower courts, as well as the legislative and administrative branches of government, including agencies and public officials.
The applicant argues that only a court has the authority to nullify the actions of an INEC official, as the agency is a government entity subject to court oversight. The applicant does not believe that INEC has the power to nullify its own decisions or actions.