Court sacks Donald Duke as SDP presidential candidate

A federal capital territory (FCT) high court has declared Jerry Gana, a former minister of information, as the winner of presidential primary poll of the Social Democratic Party (SDP).

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The election held on October 6. The party had said Donald Duke, a former governor of Cross River state, won Gana by polling 812 to 611 votes.

But the former minister challenged the result and asked the court to declare him winner of the poll in line with the party’s zoning formula.

Gana sought a perpetual injunction restraining Duke from parading himself as the SDP presidential candidate for the elections, among other reliefs.

At the court on Friday, Hussein Baba-Yusuf, the judge handling the matter, said the regulations contained in the party’s constitution were binding on every member and must be obeyed.

Baba-Yusuf said Gana presented enough evidence to have judgement in his favour.

“In this instance, the party’s Chairman, Chief Olu Falae, is from the South and Duke is from the South too; the law is clear; there is nothing to write in-between ” the judge ruled.

“The law has crystallised that political parties should abide by the regulations which they have made by themselves.

“The claimant laid sufficient evidence to have the judgment in his favour; it is a clear violation of the party’s constitution; the court cannot wave right over illegality.”

Thereafter, the judge declared Gana the winner of SDP presidential primary election and ordered Duke to stop parading himself as the party’s flagbearer.

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