Election petition: Senator faults INEC over choice of lawyer

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The Senator representing Kaduna Central, Shehu Sani, has faulted the decision of the Independent National Electoral Commission to hire A.U. Mustapha as its counsel at the state election petitions tribunal.

He claimed that Mustapha was a lawyer of the state Governor, Nasir El-Rufai.

Sani made his position known at a press conference in his residence in Kaduna on Monday.

He said it was wrong for the electoral body to hire a personal lawyer of the governor, who is also a party in the suit at the tribunal.

The senator asked INEC to drop the lawyer.

He said, “INEC has decided to hire Governor El-Rufai’s personal lawyer as its counsel.

“It is suspicious that the governor of the state and INEC are using A.U. Mustapha, who remains Governor El-Rufai’s personal lawyer.

“He is the one defending Governor El-Rufai in a case of defamation which he filed against me in four courts in Kaduna State.

“A personal lawyer of El-Rufai is now being hired by INEC in a case where El-Rufai is a party.”

Sani claimed that Mustapha had been representing the governor in courts for over 15 years.

“How ethical is it for INEC that says it has conducted free and fair elections to hire a personal lawyer of a governor who himself is a party in court?” he asked.

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