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‘Despicable act’ — Ombugadu knocks Sule over comment on tribunal judges

‘Despicable act’ — Ombugadu knocks Sule over comment on tribunal judges
October 13
15:18 2023

David Ombugadu, governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Nasarawa, has berated Abdullahi Sule, the state governor, over his remarks on judges.

In a judgment on October 2, the governorship tribunal in the state annulled Sule’s victory after two of the three judges on the panel declared Ombugadu winner of the poll.

Ibrahim Mashi, the third member of the tribunal, dismissed Ombugadu’s petition.

Sule described the verdict as a “temporary setback” and vowed to appeal it.

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Touching on the issue while speaking at the 2023 peace and development summit for undergraduates on Tuesday, the governor alleged that religious sentiments influenced the verdict of the tribunal.

Sule recalled that before the March 18 governorship election, David Abioye, pastor at the Living Faith Church, had called on Christians to vote for Christians only.

He also said the two judges who ordered his removal were Christians while the judge who gave the dissenting judgment was Muslim.

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“A lot of you must have read the tribunal ruling in our state when two of the judges, who are Christians, decided that a Christian won the election and one Muslim judge decided that it is the Muslim who won the election,” he said.

Reacting to the governor’s remark in a statement on Thursday, Ombugadu said Sule failed to use his discretion.

“Sule has suffered the misfortune of indiscretion when he threw caution to the wind and made cynical comments on the two justices of the tribunal, who gave the majority ruling that nullified his election, describing them as Christians bent on foisting a Christian governor on Nasarawa state,” the PDP candidate said.

“What is more appalling is that AA Sule chose to sow the seed of discord in the minds of young Nigerians at a ‘Peace and Development Summit for Young University Students’. That was a despicable act!!

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“We are deeply disappointed in AA Sule for condescending so low to give a religious coloration to an election he knew that he was defeated squarely.”

Ombugadu said such “divisive statements are not only inaccurate but also harmful to the unity and harmony of our state and Nigeria in general”.

“It is regrettable that AA Sule would make sweeping and unfounded claims regarding the religious affiliations of the tribunal judges who presided over the Nasarawa State election cases,” he said.

“These remarks do a disservice to the integrity and impartiality of our judicial system, and they have no place in responsible and respectful political discourse.

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“Nasarawa State is known for its rich diversity and the peaceful coexistence of people from various religious backgrounds.

“Our strength lies in our ability to live together in harmony, respecting one another’s beliefs, and working collectively towards the progress of our state.

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“We must uphold these values and refrain from making statements that could undermine our shared heritage of unity.”

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