Despite the caution of the All Progressives Congress, APC, the Governor of Niger State, Abubakar Sani-Bello, has sworn-in the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Candidate, Safiyanu Yahaya, as the Chairman of Magama Local Government Area.
The Governor, during the swearing-in ceremony at the Government House, Minna, the State capital, said that he is acting based on an High Court ruling that quashed the November 30, 2019, Local Government Council election in Magama Local Government, on the ground of pre-election offence.
The High Court 5, sitting in Minna, in March, declared Safiyanu Yahaya as the winner of the election, and ordered the Niger State Independent Electoral Commission, NSIEC, to withdraw the certificate of return issued to Salihu Ubandoma of the APC.
The Niger State APC Chairman, Engineer Mohammed Jubril Imam, had earlier advised Governor Sani-Bello to resist all pressure to swear-in anybody as the new Chairman of Magama Local Government Council, as the party had filed an appeal against the judgement.
Imam told Reporters that any attempt to swear-in a new Chairman, would be against the rule of law, and would embarrass the APC government in the State.
“APC is the ruling party, and tension is building up, and a lot of rumours are ongoing over the removal of the Magama Council Chairman. We call on the Governor to resist all pressure and go by the rule of law, so as not to embarrass the APC government. Anything done contrary to the law will embarrass the APC government. We are calling on the government to let the legal process continue, and let the status quo remain the same”, he stated.
Speaking after his swearing-in, however, Yahaya described Governor Sani-Bello as a man of justice, saying that the Governor has demonstrated his respect for the rule of law, by acting in compliance with the directive of the court.
He said that the Governor took the best decision, by swearing him in, despite the fact that he belongs to another political party, the PDP.
The Oath of Office and Allegiance were administered by Justice Salisu Alhassan Majidadi, who represented the State’s Chief Judge.