Simon Lalong, the Minister of Labour and Employment, has taken up his certificate of return to the National Assembly’s upper chamber as a senator for Plateau South.
Lalong, the governor of Plateau State for two terms, ran in the election on February 25, 2023, but was unsuccessful.
The Peoples Democratic Party’s (PDP) Napoleon Bali was proclaimed the election’s victor by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
Lalong went to the tribunal after the elections, dissatisfied with the results, and the tribunal found in his favor.
The three-member panel’s chairman, Justice Mahmoud Tukur, delivered the ruling, ruling that the PDP candidate’s votes were squandered since he was not legitimately nominated.
The ruling stated that the PDP did not have a legitimate structure in the state at the time of the nomination.
Bali filed an appeal after rejecting the tribunal’s decision.
The PDP candidate’s votes were cast illegally, according to the appeal court, which affirmed the tribunal’s decision. Justice Elfaida Williams-Dawodu delivered the decision.
Judge Williams-Dawodu gave INEC the order to provide Lalong a new certificate of return and to revoke the one that had been granted to Bali.
Lalong and a few of his friends stormed the INEC offices in Abuja on Thursday to retrieve the certificate, which was given to him by National Commissioner Mohammed Haruna.
After this, he took to his Twitter handle to say, “Today I received the certificate of return at the INEC Headquarters from the National Commissioner Mohammed Haruna.”
His action shows he might quit his role as Labour minister, which has been problematic as a result of the running battle with Labour leaders, the last which led to a nationwide strike as a result of the assault on Joe Ajaero, President of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) in Owerri, Imo State.
Ironically, David Umahi, a former governor like Lalong, had quit the senate to join the cabinet of President Bola Tinubu.