The Peoples Democratic Party’s appeal panel on Sunday cleared the state’s acting governor, Umar Fintiri, to contest in the party’s September 6 primaries for the October 11 governorship bye-election in Adamawa State.
Mr. Fintiri was on Saturday disqualified by the Ibrahim Mantu-led screening committee.
Mr. Mantu had, while briefing journalists shortly after the screening on Sunday, cited Section 191 (2) of the Nigeria Constitution 1999 as amended as reason for disqualifying the acting governor.
Mr. Mantu said Mr. Fintiri was not a deputy governor, adding that his duty as acting governor was to supervise the conduct of a fresh election of a new governor, but not to participate.
However, the 13-member appeal panel committee led by James Manager, Sunday, disagreed with the position of the screening panel and cleared Mr. Fintiri.
Addressing journalists after the sitting of the panel, Mr. Manager said, “We looked at the whole issue, the Nigerian Constitution, the Electoral Act and the PDP Constitution and have come to the conclusion that the provisions of the constitutions does not affect the applicant.
“Section 191 (2) does not affect the applicant to participate in the election. This decision was unanimously taken by us. We are issuing a provisional clearance to the applicant.
“Almost all of us are meeting the acting governor for the first time and the decision to clear him was taken based on what was before us.”
Earlier, Mr. Fintiri had told journalists after appearing before the appeal panel that “a decision was taken yesterday by the screening committee which I was not happy with and I came to seek redress with the appeal panel and I think they will do justice to what I have come to ask from them.”