Appeal Court Dismisses PDP’s Suit Against Tinubu, Shettima

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The Court of Appeal, Abuja, Friday evening, dismissed an appeal filed by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), seeking the disqualification of the President-elect, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, and his deputy, Kashim Shettima, from last month’s election.

PDP had in an appeal marked: CA/ABJ/CV/108/2023 urged the appellate court to reverse the January 13 ruling by the Federal High Court, Abuja, which dismissed its suit against the President-elect and Shettima.

The party had in the suit filed on July 28, 2022, challenged the validity of the Tinubu/Shettima ticket for the presidential election.

It argued that Shettima’s nomination as the APC vice-presidential candidate was in breach of the provisions of Sections 29(1), 33, 35 and 84{1)}(2)} of the Electoral Act, 2022 (as amended).

The PDP insisted that at the time Shettima was nominated as APC vice-presidential candidate, he had not resigned or withdrawn his nomination as the party’s candidate for Borno Central Senatorial District.

The party, therefore, sought an order disqualifying the APC, Tinubu, and Shettima from contesting the presidential election.

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), APC, Tinubu, and Shettima were listed as respondents in the appeal.

The defendants, in their preliminary objection, urged the court to dismiss the suit for want of jurisdiction.

At Friday’s proceeding, a three-member panel of the appellate court headed by Justice James Abundaga, unanimously held that the PDP failed to establish that it had locus standi to institute the case.

Justice Abundaga, who delivered the lead judgement, described the PDP as a busybody who dabbled into the internal affairs of another party.

He declared that the lower court was right to have dismissed the PDP’s case.

“The appellant, having failed to disclose its locus standi, this appeal fails and it is hereby dismissed,” he said.

The judge also awarded N5 million cost against the appellant’s lawyer, J. O. Olotu.