Tribunal dismisses cases against Useni, Maren



The National Assembly Election Petitions Tribunal on Monday in Jos dismissed cases challenging the elections of Sen. Jeremiah Useni and Rep. Solomon Maren.

Useni represents Plateau South, while Maren represents Bokkos/Mangu Federal Constituency in Plateau.

A former Senator, retired Gen. John Shagaya, had prayed the tribunal to nullify Useni’s election, alleging irregularities, rigging and massive inflation of figures.

But the Chairman of the tribunal, Justice O. O. Akeredolu, who ruled on the matter, dismissed Shagaya’s application for lack of merit.

She ruled that there was “structural imbalance in the body of the case that deprived it of all properties that make a good case”.

Similarly, the tribunal in the case involving Maren held that the statement of witnesses in the petition was not properly filed.

“The entire body of the petition was badly presented and was very watery.

“The petition and the prayers of the petitioner do not deserve to be heard.

“The tribunal is left with no option than to dismiss the petition for lack of merit,” she ruled.

Reacting to the ruling, Counsel to Useni, Smart Iraboh, described the judgment as “victory for justice.

“It was a good judgment and nobody, anywhere, has any cause to complain because the judgment was straight forward and indeed came up that way,” he said.

The Counsel to Shagaya, Mr Bitrus Zilvel, on his part, said that he would study the judgment before deciding on the next line of action.

Counsel to Maren Clement Lonongo, described the judgment as “lucid, water-tight and based on the principles of law.

“The judiciary in Nigeria can be trusted because this case was critically evaluated based on what was presented before the tribunal.

“Clearly, the tribunal came up with a judgment that will stand the test of time,” he said.

In a telephone interview, with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) Useni described his victory as “cheery news.

“Of course, I am happy and I thank God,” he said.

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