The All Progressive Congress Senatorial candidate, Muhammad Sani Abdullahi, has presented six witnesses to challenge the victory and qualifications of the Peoples Democratic Party’s Senatorial candidate, Lawal Adamu, at the February 25th, 2023 National Assembly Poll.
In that poll, the Independent National Electoral Commission declared the candidate of the PDP winner to represent the Kaduna Central Senatorial District in the 10th Senate.
The three-man panel, led by Justice H H Kereng, heard testimonies from witnesses sourced from the former schools attended by the PDP candidate and the Independent National Electoral Commission.
Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, was the first witness and was represented by a member of the University legal team and Associate Professor Abubakar Is’haq from the Faculty of Law at the University.
The University was subpoenaed to provide records of Lawal Adamu’s files while he was a student at the institution.
The second witness, the National Examination Council, represented by its Director of Special Duties, Esther Wuyaa, presented certified result confirmation to the court.
The third witness that testified against the Senator was Demonstration Primary School through the Head Teacher of the School, Dr. Ibrahim Yusuf.
The school tendered to the court the school registration records from 1982 to 1986, which showed no record of Lawal Adamu Usman as a student of the school, as he claimed in the documents he submitted to INEC prior to the 2023 general elections.
Also testifying, the Principal of Government Day Secondary School (GDSS), Gwagwalada, Bello Suleiman, told the tribunal that based on available records at the school, there was no candidate with the name of Lawal Adamu Usman from the years 1986 to 1994, as claimed by Senator Lawal Adamu Usman as submitted to Independent Electoral Commission in Form CF001 for the 2023 general elections.
Two additional witnesses were called upon following the issuance of subpoenas by the court, and all testified with evidence against Senator Lawal Adamu to the court by the Petitioner’s Counsel, Johnson Usman, SAN.
During the tribunal proceedings, Counsel to the first respondent, M.A Magaji, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, cross-examined all the witnesses with no objections.
Speaking to journalists shortly after the court proceeding, Johnson Usman, SAN, counsel to Muhammad Abdullahi of the APC, explained that one of the grounds for the petition was the first respondent’s qualification to contest the election given his presentation of forged certificates, and also substantial non-compliance with the electoral act.
All schools that testified, submitted their school registers to the court which revealed that the names of Lawal Adamu Usman was conspicuously not on the record within the period he claimed to be a student of the schools.
The tribunal adjourned sitting to the 11th of July, 2023 for continuation of admission of additional witnesses of certificate forgeries against the defendant.