Kogi West senator, Dino Melaye, has appealed against August 23, 2019, judgment of the Kogi State National/State Assembly Election Tribunal in Abuja which sacked him from office.
The three-man panel led by Justice A.O Chijioke, in a split decision of two-to-one, ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission to conduct a fresh election within 90 days.
The petition was filed by Smart Adeyemi, and his party, the All Progressives Congress, contending that February 23, 2019, was marred by irregularities.
Adeyemi, a one-time senator, alleged that there were incidents of over-voting and substantial non-compliance with the Electoral Act during the election. His case was upheld by the majority judgment of the tribunal.
But Melaye has filed 23 grounds of appeal before the Court of Appeal in Abuja, to challenge the tribunal’s majority judgment.
The senator, in his notice of appeal dated September 5, 2019, urged the Court of Appeal to dismiss the petition filed before the tribunal and confirm his electoral victory.
He maintained in the notice of appeal filed on his behalf by his counsel, Rickey Tarfa (SAN), that the person sued at the tribunal as “Senator Dino Melaye” was not the same person as the person who contested the poll and declared winner of the election as contained in Form CF001 – “Melaye Daniel Dino”.
His notice of appeal read in part, “The provision of the law is that the name as used in Form CF001 is the only valid name that can be used to challenge the election of the Appellant.
“The principle of equity accepted and applied by the majority members of the tribunal cannot override the provisions of the law in respect of the petition.
“The judgment of the tribunal was perverse and against the weight of evidence before it.”
The respondents to the appeal are Smart Adeyemi, the All Progressives Congress, Peoples Democratic Party and the Independent National Electoral Commission.