Former Governor of Cross River State, Mr. Donald Duke, has been removed as the Presidential candidate of Social Democratic Party (SDP) and replaced by Jerry Gana.
This decision was reached by a High Court of the Federal Capital Territory in Maitama Abuja
The presiding Judge, Justice Baba Hussein-Yusuf, ordered the change following a suit instituted by Gana challenging Duke’s win in the Primaries held in October
While the former Cross River Governor won in the primaries, his win was against the zoning and rotation formula provided in section 15(3) of the SDP’s constitution.
According to the SDP’s constitution, The Party’s Chairman and Candidate cannot be from the same Zone. This means that Olu Falae, Chairman of the party, who is from Ondo and Donald Duke who was the Presidential candidate who is from Cross River state are from the same zone, as Ondo and Cross River are both considered to be the South.
“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,” the judge said in his ruling.
Therefore, the 812 votes by Donald Duke were nullified, while the 611 votes gotten by Gana was viewed as the highest lawful votes, thereby making the former information minister the Presidential candidate of the SDP.