On Wednesday, the Adamawa State High Court stayed proceedings in the case involving suspended INEC Resident Electoral Officer, REC, Hudu Yunusa-Ari.
The court, which had been set to hear the case, stated that it had received an order from a federal High Court in Abuja halting the trial and hence had to postpone proceedings pending further developments.
Aishatu Ahmed Binani, the Adamawa APC governorship candidate in the last election, obtained an order from a federal High Court in Abuja restraining Hudu’s prosecution at the Yola high court pending the resolution of her own petition at the tribunal over the election itself, which led to the court case involving Hudu.
When the Hudu case came up for hearing before the State High Court on Wednesday, the prosecution’s counsel, Rotimi Jacobs (SAN), informed the court that an Abuja judge had barred him from arraigning Hudu.
Rotimi, on the other hand, stated that while the alleged offences preferred against Hudu are serious, it appeared that Binani was attempting to avoid prosecution by requesting protection from a court of concurrent jurisdiction.
Justice Benjamin Lawan, the presiding Judge of the Yola High Court, stated that the state High Court had received the order issued by the Court in Abuja and that his Court would not act until the order elapsed or until developments in the coming days or weeks suggested.
According to DAILY POST, the Adamawa State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, accused Binani of attempting to protect herself from indictment by petitioning the Federal High Court in Abuja to stop the prosecution of Hudu Yunusa-Ari, who declared herself the winner of the Adamawa governorship election while results were still being collated, and for which Hudu is now facing the law court.
Idris Yahaya, the PDP state secretary, told journalists in Yola that Binani was attempting to undermine Hudu’s trial in order to avoid indictment.
“Binani’s demand to halt the prosecution of one of the key conspirators in Adamawa’s botched civilian coup should be rejected.”
“Our belief is that Hudu will be prosecuted and Binani will be punished for her ignoble role,” the PDP scribe said, adding that by giving an acceptance speech after Hudu unlawfully declared her winner, Binani demonstrated that she conspired with Hudu to declare her winner of an election process that had yet to be completed.