Home News Smart Adeyemi loses appeal as court affirms Ododo as Kogi APC guber...

Smart Adeyemi loses appeal as court affirms Ododo as Kogi APC guber candidate


The Court of Appeal in Abuja has affirmed Ahmed Ododo as the governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Kogi state.

In a unanimous judgment delivered on Friday, a three-member panel of the appellate court dismissed two separate appeals filed by aggrieved aspirants — Smart Adeyemi and Abubakar Yahaya-Ashemogu.

The panel, led by Muhammed Shuaibu, held that the appellants failed to prove their allegations that Ododo was elected through an invalid primary.

The court held that Adeyemi, former senator representing Kogi west, raised criminal allegations that ought to have been proved beyond a reasonable doubt.

The judge held that the APC placed sufficient evidence before the trial court to justify the outcome of the party’s primary poll.

“The evidence placed before the trial court by the respondents was not controverted by the appellant,” the lead justice said.

“Where commission of a crime is an issue, it must be proved beyond reasonable doubt.

“Allegation of falsification of votes is a criminal act and it is required in law to be proved beyond a reasonable doubt, which the appellant could not prove.

“On the whole, the appeal is un-meritorious and it is hereby dismissed.

“The judgement of the lower court is hereby affirmed. Parties are to bear their respective cost.”

Ododo, a former local government auditor-general in the state, scored 78, 704 votes to beat six other contestants in the APC primary.

Salami Momodu got 1,506 votes, Yahaya-Ashemogu secured 1,159 and Abubakar Audu polled 763.

Stephen Ocheni garnered 552 votes, Sanusi Ohiare had 424, and Smart Adeyemi got 311 votes.

Adeyemi subsequently approached the Abuja federal high court with a suit marked: FHC/ABJ/CS/556/2023, seeking the invalidation of the guber primary.

Yahaya-Ashemogu also filed a separate suit to challenge the outcome of the election.

In a judgment delivered on July 12, James Omotosho, the trial judge, dismissed the suit for lacking merit.

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