January 30, 2023
Kano APC leadership: Ganduje floors Shekarau Kano APC leadership: Ganduje floors Shekarau

Kano APC leadership: Ganduje floors Shekarau

 …Appeal Court dismisses parallel congresses

 By Usman Usman Garba & Salihi Abubakar Bello

The Court of Appeal Division in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) has yesterday dismissed the judgment of a lower court which upheld the parallel congresses of All Progressives Congress (APC) con­ducted in Kano State by its G-7 faction led by the former governor of the state, Senator Malam Ibrahim Shekarau.

By the ruling of the court, Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje of the state has finally retained the supremacy to control the structure of the party under the leadership of Alhaji Abdullahi Ab­bas.

In the yesterday’s judgment, the court insisted that the Federal High Court, FCT Division lacks the jurisdic­tion to sit on the party ward and local government council congresses, which earlier recognised Alhaji Haruna Ah­madu Danzago as party chairman.

The court therefore upheld the prayers of the appellants (Ganduje fac­tion) to recognize the existing leader­ship of the party and discountenance of the lower court ruling.

It then set aside the judgment of the FCT High Court, which invalidatedthe state ward and local government congresses.

Upholding the appeal, filed by the Ganduje-led faction, the appellate court held that the High Court lacked the jurisdiction to try the case.

It would be recalled that Malam Shekarau-led faction approached the FCT High Court in Abuja, shortly after the party’s congresses in Kano during which it upheld the group’s congresses, as against that of the Governor Ganduje-led side.

Dissatisfied with the High Court ruling, Ganduje’s group headed to the Appeal Court to contest it.

Also, in its ruling, the appellate court held that the case was not a pre-election matter but an internal one of the ruling party, and therefore should be decided by its leadership.

The party caretaker committee had earlier recognised the Shekarau faction as its authentic state execu­tive after the lower court judgement.

Subsequently it proceeded on a power sharing arrangement which made Governor Ganduje its leader.

But the Shekarau group rejected the arrangement, saying the congress that was organised when his faction emerged victorious last year was au­thentic and non-negotiable.

The appellate court then upturned the judgement recognizing the Shek­arau factional executive.

Therefore, by the ruling of the ap­pellate court, Governor Ganduje has finally retained control of the party’s state structure under the leadership of Alhaji Abdullahi Abbas.

That is until an appeal is further made to the Supreme Court for final arbitration.

Meanwhile, Governor Ganduje has appealed to Shekarau camp to consider reconciliation.

He said: “I am appealing to them (Shekarau-led faction) because we are members of one family, the APC. Kano State is almost 100 per cent APC, we should come together and forge ahead in such a manner.”

Ganduje made the appeal while addressing journalists at the APC National Secretariat in Abuja.

He appealed to the defeated fac­tion to cooperate with him in build­ing the party.

Ganduje also confirmed that the APC national leadership had hand­ed his own state chairman, Alhaji Abdullahi Abbas his certificate of return.

He said: “First of all, we have to thank God for this very important victory at the moment.

“The APC of Kano State has got­ten a judgement that all the elections we conducted from the wards to the state level are legally recognised.

“I want to thank the party and the leadership for initiating the peace move to ensure that our party is united. I have to thank the party for that.

“A judgement has been passed in our favour and APC stakeholders in Kano are here to show our appreciation to the leadership of the party.

“We have the House Leader, Sena­tor, other representatives, representa­tives of the 44 local government chair­men, state Assembly members, elected councillors from Kano State, and to you the members of the press for cov­ering all the court proceedings.”

Speaking on the court judgement, the state Commissioner for Informa­tion, Malam Muhammadu Garba, ex­pressed delight with the victory.

He explained that Governor Gan­duje has promised to do everything to bring the G-7 members of the party back to its mainstream.

The commissioner, who commend­ed the governor for his fatherly role during the negotiation, said the party was determined to work together to face the challenges of 2023.

He described the situation as a huge source of happiness to them, saying: “What is paramount to the governor now is reconciliation.”

The commissioner said the civilised approach of Governor Ganduje in han­dling the affairs was a pride to all com­ing political actors in the state.

He promised to effectively informthe public about the good work of the state.

On his part, the state chairman of the party, Alhaji Abdullahi Abbas thanked God for the victory, extending an in­vitation to those who felt aggrieved to join hands in ensuring the victory of the party in future elections.

In response to the court verdict, one of Shekarau’s faction, Alhaji Murtala Alhassan Zainawa said their position in respect of the Appeal Court judgment is to challenge the judgment at the Su­preme Court.

According to him, though the Ap­peal Court did not mention any fac­tion as substantive leader of the party in the state, it rather called on them to resolve their contentions within themselves as they are all members of the same party.

He called on the followers of their faction to continue to live in peace as truth would prevail in the Supreme Court.

Zainawa argued that politics is not about power, but having the popular masses behind you, stressing that they have the support of the majority of the electorate.

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