Dr Patrick Sunday Dakum is the authentic, legal and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) recognized Plateau State Governorship Labour Party (LP) candidate.
This is simply because Dakum’s name is the duly nominated personalty and submitted by the LP and his name is on the INEC portal,hence Amb Yohanna Yibpwan Margif’s originating summons placed Dr Patrick Dakum as the second defendant while the Labour Party is the first defendant and the Independent National Electoral Commission, who supervised the primary election of 5th August, 2022 as the third defendant.

Reliable legal sources revealed that before the legitimate Labour Party Governorship primary of the 5th of August, 2022, Amb.Yohanna Yilpwan Margif had voluntarily withdrew from the Governorship race on the 2nd of August, 2022, his letter of withdrawal signed by him and same content related to the LP and the LP wrote to INEC indicating his withdrawal and the need to conduct replacement election primaries in eleven states including Plateau State for Governorship, Senatorial, House of Representatives and House of Assembly seats.

Permission was granted by INEC and the primaries of 5th August, 2022 produced Dr Patrick Sunday Dakum as the authentic and legally recognized Plateau State Labour Party Governorship Candidate in full glare of LP delegates, INEC, Security operatives, NGOs, CSOS and Journalists in Jos.

When the LP in the ward of Yohanna Yilpwan Margif discovered that he was involved in anti party activities against the LP, faced with undaunted petitions on his criminal activities,hobnobbing with the APC Government, issuance of dud cheques, trading with the LP and unpleasant immoral acts, he was expelled from the LP in his ward, Bokkos Local Government Area Chapter expelled him, the state also expelled him and his expulsion was ratified on the 9th of August, 2022.
He went to court on the 12th of August, 2022 when he was no longer a member of the LP.

Yohanna Yilpwan Margif was aware of the August 5th, 2022 Governorship replacement primaries but he did not go to court to stop the primaries that produced Dr Dakum, possibly because he was not interested and in any case, is someone who is always in detention good enough for any political party and political office? No.

In accordance with the 2022 Electoral Act, Margif dully signed form EC 11B which enabled the Labour Party to inform INEC for the August 5th, 2022 primary which produced Dr Dakum as the legitimate and INEC recognised Plateau State LP Governorship candidate to fly it’s flag in the 2023 General Elections.

It is pertinent to note that the matter in the Federal High Court Jos is not a case of double nomination nor is there any circular to transfer the Labour Party case to Abuja but the handiwork of one Miss Nandir, in the Registry, who was a House of Assembly aspirant in the APC in Langtang North Central, who is bent on helping the Lalong Government in scuttling the chances of the LP Governorship candidate and the LP in Plateau State to give the APC mileage in the 2023 Governorship Election.

Legal pundits posits that it is also worthy of note that Margif’s case is a pre- election matter which is to run for 180 days but if the plaintiff is dragging his matter by frustrating hearing, it might at the long run be at his peril.

Legal sources equity indicate that the file will be returned to Jos and in few days, a date for hearing may be set.

Legal sources revealed that it should also be on record that Margif, the plaintiff was not an aspirant of the LP at any point to contest against Dr Dakum, therefore, he can not sue to challenge the primaries where Dr Patrick Sunday Dakum emerged as the Plateau State Labour Party Governorship candidate.

Similarly,legal pundits said, on point of law, if Margif, the plaintiff did not withdraw, why did he not approach the court to stop the primaries that produced Dr Patrick Sunday Dakum as the validly elected LP Plateau State Governorship candidate? It is because Margif withdraw from the race that was why INEC allowed for the replacement primaries, Dakum’s name uploaded on INEC portal and that is why Margif is in court.

It is on record that Margif submitted an affidavit on his withdrawal on the 2nd of August, 2023 voluntarily and the LP forwarded same to INEC.

From the submissions above with relevant documents presented,legal pundits said, duly signed by Margif and the expulsion of Amb Yohanna Yilpwan Margif, he has no locus standi to institute a matter against the LP, where he is no longer a member. On the issue of the purchase of forms, it is well known that political parties’ forms are non refundable when bought but receipts issued after payments are made.
In a further and better affidavit signed and presented to the Federal High Court Jos, Yohanna Yilpwan Margif hinted that there were discrepancies in the preliminary objections of the Labour Party, Dr Patrick Dakum and INEC in the spelling of his name, dates and a disclaimer by the chairman of his ward but legal sources revealed that in pre-election matters, minor discrepancies are not taken too seriously as compared to the main election and post-election cases.It was also asserted that, was Amb.written on the WAEC results he presented to the party or INEC?What date did he sit for WAEC?Should the discrepancies on the Yohanna Yilpwan Margif found on his originating summons, where PDP was written in bracket instead of LP also be used to dismiss his case?

On the issue of disclaimer by his expelled chairman, legal pundits believe it will not hold water as all ward Exco members signed his expulsion as attached to the preliminary objections.

By Nangwang Ishaya, Jos.

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About The Author
- Studied Mass Communication from the University of Jos. He is a Media Consultant, Journalist, a blogger, public relations practitioner and an advocate for social justice.