Benue Governorship tribunal upholds Gov Alia’s election

Fr. Alia
Benue State Governor, Hyacinth Alia

The Benue State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Makurdi on Saturday, September 22, upheld the election of Governor Hyacinth Alia of the All Progressives Congress (APC).

In a judgment delivered today, the tribunal dismissed the petition of the Peoples Democratic Party and its governorship candidate, Titus Uba, challenging the election held on March 18 2023, for lack of jurisdiction to entertain the matter.

Chairman of the three-man panel of justices, Justice Ibrahim Karaye, held that the tribunal has no jurisdiction to entertain the petition as the matter raised before the tribunal are pre-election issues as captured in section 285 of the Electoral Act.

The tribunal also mentioned that the petitioner ought to have pursued its case of non-qualification and the nomination of Governor Alia by the APC and the allegation of a forged certificate and false information on form EC9 against his deputy, Sam Ode before the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), beyond the Federal High Court which dismissed the earlier suit filed by the petitioner to the Court of Appeal and not the tribunal.

After the March 18 election, INEC declared Alia the winner of the election with 473,933 votes to beat his closest rival Uba who scored 223,913.