Friday, March 24, 2023

Presidential Election: Court strikes out suit seeking Tinubu’s disqualification

“Having found that the plaintiff lacks the locus standi, the court has no jurisdiction to proceed with the matter, and the proceedings will terminate at this point.”

• January 19, 2023
Bola Tinubu and All Progressives Congress (APC)
Bola Tinubu and All Progressives Congress (APC)

The Abuja Division of the Federal High Court on Wednesday struck out a suit seeking the disqualification of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and Bola Tinubu over the nomination of Muslim-Muslim candidacy for the February 25 presidential election.

Justice Ahmed Mohammed, Delivering judgment, struck out the suit instituted by an Abuja-based lawyer, Osigwe Momoh, on the grounds that the plaintiff lacked the locus standi to file it.

Mr Mohammed held that the lawyer, not being a member of APC and having not participated in the process that produced Mr Tinubu and his running mate, Kashim Shettima, could not query their nominations.

“Having perused the originating summons of the suit, I am unable to see where the plaintiff was an aspirant in the election. Having found that the plaintiff lacks the locus standi, the court has no jurisdiction to proceed with the matter and the proceedings will terminate at this point,” stated the judge. “This matter is hereby struck out for want of jurisdiction.”

Mr Momoh had, in the suit, prayed the court for an order disqualifying the APC and nullifying the candidature of Mr Tinubu from participating in the presidential election.

He said this was on the grounds that the nomination of a Muslim-Muslim candidacy was unconstitutional and against the spirit and letters of Sections 14, 15 and 224 of the 1999 Constitution.

Specifically, the lawyer who claimed to be an apostle of the rule of law and social justice argued that a Muslim-Muslim candidacy ran counter to the spirit of national cohesion, integration and unity.

He asked the court for an order of perpetual injunction stopping the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) from publishing the name of APC and its presidential candidate for the 2023 election. 


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