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2019 Presidency: Judgement In Suit Challenging Atiku’s Eligibility To Hold February 21

2019 Presidency: Judgement In Suit Challenging Atiku’s Eli

Atiku Abubakar

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Bolanle Akinlade
Bolanle Akinlade

I am a diligent, innovative, and detail-oriented individual, who thrives in dynamic environments.

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A Federal High Court sitting in Abuja, on Monday, fixed February 21, 2022, for judgment in a suit seeking to challenge former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar’s eligibility to vie for the office of the president.

Justice Inyang Ekwo fixed the date after taking arguments from counsel to the parties in the suit.

An Incorporated Trustees of Egalitarian Mission for Africa (EMA), in a suit marked: FHC/ABJ/CS/177/2019 had sued Atiku, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) as 1st to 4th respondents respectively
 
EMA is challenging Atiku’s eligibility to contest for presidency on the grounds that he is not a Nigerian citizen by birth.

The group asked the court to hold, among others, that considering the provisions of  Sections 25(1) &(2) and 131(a) of the constitution and the circumstances surrounding the former vice president’s birth, he cannot contest for the top office.

The Adamawa State Government, through its Attorney-General (AG), had, on July 27, sought an order of the court to be joined in the suit.

The court, in the motion dated April 26 and filed June 24, granted the prayer of the AG of Adamawa to be joined in the case as 5th defendant.

The Adamawa government had told the court that Atiku was eligible to vie for the office of the president.
 
Eyitayo Jegede, SAN, who appeared for Atiku (1st defendant), said a notice of preliminary objection was filed.

Jegede, after withdrawing two motions earlier filed, one of which challenged the jurisdiction of court, urged the court to dismiss the plaintiff application.

He argued that a previous case relied upon by the applicant in filing the suit did not relate with the matter at hand.

The Senior Lawyer also argued that the matter was already stale as it was tied to 2019 election, in which his client vied for the election, challenged the poll and was unsuccessful.

He said this defined the futility of the plaintiff case. Corroborating Jegede’s submission, counsel to the 2nd defendant (PDP), Adedamola Falokun, said he also filed a notice of preliminary objection. 

He described the matter as a pre-election matter, urging the court not to waste its time on it. 

“I stand in alignment with the learner SAN that this matter is stale. 

“They filed this before 2019 election that the 1st defendant (Atiku) should not be cleared.

“The 1st defendant had been cleared, he contested and lost in the election. And you are still talking about 2019 when we are in 2021 and in a few days, we will be in 2022,” he said. 

The lawyer argued that there was no single line in the plaintiff application that specifically stated on the good ground why Atiku could be debarred from being cleared from contesting the election.

 

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Bolanle Akinlade
Bolanle Akinlade

I am a diligent, innovative, and detail-oriented individual, who thrives in dynamic environments.

More From this Author

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