Concerns are growing that the use of pre-election matters to remove National Assembly members from Plateau State may be linked to the use of the judiciary to remove Plateau State Governor, Caleb Mutfwang.

Sources close to the panel’s inner workings told our correspondent that, barring any unforeseen circumstances, the court is set to overturn the election tribunal’s verdict, which upheld the PDP’s electoral victory in the 2023 Plateau State governorship election due to pre-election matters.

The organised plot to nullify the governorship election results may be linked to the subtle plot to sack the PDP’s overwhelming majority and replace them with APC candidates as plateau election winners.

Just this week, the Appeal Court fired Reps Beni Lar and Dachung Bagos and overturned Senator Napoleon Bali’s election result, giving victory to former governor Simon Bako Lalong, who finished second in the Plateau South Senatorial race.

According to a source, “these Court of Appeal verdicts are not by chance, but deliberate moves to swing the pendulum of victory to the APC, which has sworn to take over the state.” removing the governor as he is currently plotted will turn out to be the icing on on cake.”

Despite protests from many areas of Nigerian society about the use of pre-election matters as a basis for overturning election results, the Appeal Court justices have continued to defy the regulations that prohibit such use.

Protests by the PDP and other civil society players that pre-election problems are only being investigated in Plateau to determine election petitions have been dismissed.

In the midst of the judicial battle, many eyes have turned to the President of the Court of Appeal, Hon Justice Monica Dongban-Mensem.

Justice Dongban-Mensem belongs to the same ethnic group as Lalong, albeit she has not been accused of instigating the judgements.

Following the dismissal of certain PDP members of the National Assembly this week, a demonstration erupted in Jos, the Plateau State capital, with protestors calling on the judiciary to refrain from using pre-election concerns to determine election outcomes in the future.

A protester identified as Godwin Pam stated that it is apparent that the APC is on a mission to recoup what they lost through the ballot box through the backdoor.

“We’re aware that the APC is on a mission. If the people don’t wake up and oppose what we are seeing, the governor may be sacked on account of pre-election matters. 

“Some top APC chieftains have sworn to even the scores, and the result of the court verdicts so far announced shows that they are not resting on their oars. Something should be done fast to stop attempts at dragging the judiciary in the mud”, the source added.

Earlier, the Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria, HURIWA, condemned what it called the rigging of election petition judgements in favour of the APC during a news conference last Sunday.

HURIWA’s national coordinator, Emmanuel Onwubiko, said at a news conference on Sunday in Abuja that recent events in Plateau have put a cloud of doubt and suspicion on the integrity of the court.

HURIWA was particularly concerned about what it called “rigging” of election results in favour of the APC.

In reaction, Dachung Bagos, who was expelled as a member of the House of Representatives for Jos South and Jos East, said:

“It was like a military coup that happened on the Plateau. From the reaction you have seen on the streets sacking seven National Assembly members through the courts and all of them from the PDP. 

“These are people that none of them won our election with less than 50,000 votes. The difference between me and the first runner up was 65,000.”


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