Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Anxiety across the APC camp as cases seeking Buhari’s disqualification hold today

There is palpable tension in the polity as the suits seeking the disqualification of the presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress, Muhammadu Buhari, in the March 28 election come up for hearing at the Federal High Court, Abuja, on Tuesday.
There are no fewer than 10 suits seeking Mr. Buhari’s disqualification from the race on different grounds. All have now been consolidated for a hearing since they are all seeking the same relief.

Justice Adeniyi Ademola had on March 19 adjourned hearing on the suit to March 24.
In one of the suits, Chukwunweike Okafor is seeking an order compelling the Independent National Electoral Commission to remove or delete Mr. Buhari’s name and that of the APC from the list of persons and political parties eligible for the office of President.
In the suit, Mr. Buhari, the APC and INEC were listed as first, second and third defendants, respectively.
Mr. Okafor asked the court to hold that the information supplied by the APC flag-bearer in Form C.F 001 that his West African School Certificate was with the Nigerian Army was false and should be disqualified from the race.
In another suit, Max Ozoaka asked the court to disqualify Mr. Buhari on the ground that the INEC Form Cf 001 the APC candidate submitted to INEC was incomplete.
He contended that Mr. Buhari failed to accompany the form with all relevant academic credentials.
Mr. Ozoaka also raised objections regarding some of the information contained in other documents submitted by the APC candidate, including voter’s card.
Addressing the court at the last hearing, Mr. Buhari’s team of lawyers, comprising five Senior Advocate of Nigeria, led by Wole Olanipekun, said all the suits were targeted at stopping the APC presidential flag bearer from participating in the election.
The lawyers also contended that no court has the power to stop INEC from conducting the presidential election on March 28.
They asked the court not to allow itself to be used for the purpose, stating that Section 87 (11) of the Electoral Act cautions courts not to do anything or take action or issue any injunction that will stop the holding of primary or general elections.

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