Senator Dino Melaye, who was sacked by the National Assembly Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Lokoja, Kogi State, has assured his supporters that he would be victorious at the Appeal Court.
Melaye, who represents Kogi Westp on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), was sacked earlier Friday on the ground that his election was marred by irregularities.
Delivering Judgment, the three-member panel led by Justice A. O. Chijioke unanimously held that the election was shrouded in controversy and marred by widespread malpractices.
Melaye scored 85,395 votes to defeat APC opponent, Smart Adeyemi, who polled 66,902 votes.
Dissatisfied with the outcome of the election, the APC candidate filed the petition challenging Mr Melaye’s declaration by INEC as the winner of the election.
Adeyemi hinged the petition on three grounds of irregularities, overvoting and non-compliance with the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended).
The panel said only a fresh election would settle the disputes that emanated from the conduct of the election.
The panel, therefore, ordered INEC to conduct a fresh election for the senatorial district within 90 days.
While reacting to the decision on his Twitter handle, Melaye said he would get judgment at the appeal court.
“No cause for alarm at all. Even if it went my way they will still go to the Appeal Court. Our mandate cannot be taken. We will get judgment at the Appeal Court,” he wrote.
The controversial lawmaker also restated his desire to contest the Kogi State governorship election in November.
“There will be fresh election in Kogi West because I will be Governor. For my Senate mandate no shaking,” he wrote.
Melaye is, however, expected to continue in office until the appeal or supreme court determines the case.
Melaye was first elected to the House of Representatives in 2007 to represent Kabba/Ijumu Federal Constituency.
He later changed camp and defected to the All Progressives Congress in 2015 where he contested and won election as a senator representing Kogi West in 2015.
He went back to PDP in 2019 to contest the February senatorial election and was declared the winner by INEC.