The ongoing proceedings at the Nasarawa State Governorship Election Tribunal witnessed a dramatic turn last Wednesday as Governor Almakura’s witnesses took to the witness box to openly testify in favour of the former Information Minister, Labaran Maku as winner of the election in their respective areas!
It was learnt that court was thrown into mild drama when the first witness to appear for Almakura from Arutu in Doma LGA under cross Examination by Maku’s Lawyers led by Solomon Akuma SAN averred that it was Maku not Almakura that won the election in his area.
Amidst obvious discomfort by Almakura’s legal team led by Yusuf Ali, SAN, the second witness from Burum-Burum also in Doma LGA again under cross examination by Chief Akuma, SAN, admitted that Maku won election in his area! At this point the court was thrown into confusion as Yusuf Ali, Almakura’s lawyer stood up to request abrupt adjournment till the following day to enable him meet with his witnesses.
He said he had just come into Lafia from Lagos and hadn’t the opportunity to meet with Almakura’s witnesses before the session began on Wednesday. At that stage Maku’s lawyers rejected the plea, arguing that the Almakura’s team had whole two months to prepare for their defense.
However the tribunal Chairman granted Almakura’s lawyer the one day adjournment which was not opposed by Maku’s lawyers.
On Thursday the court resumed at 9 am waiting for Almakura’s team to resume presentation of witnesses. Yusuf Ali SAN, Almakura’s lead lawyer did not turn up in court. While the court was waiting for the witnesses to be presented to continue the day’s session, a junior counsel in the Almakura’s team stood up to announce that following consultations and review of their case, they had decided to withdraw further witnesses and close their case.
Again there was a mild drama in court as everyone was taken aback. The Application to close Almakura’s case was granted by the Tribunal. Almakura’s team had forwarded a list of 24 witnesses to testify in court. In the end they withdrew the rest after the first two testified in favour of the APGA Governorship Candidate, Former Information Minister Labaran Maku.