The Appeal Court on Thursday set aside the ruling of an FCT High Court which Donald Duke from parading himself as the Presidential Candidate of the Social Democratic Party (SDP).
The three-man panel led by Justice Abdul Aboki held that the application is illegal and unconstitutional, which ought not to have been entertained by the lower court.
The court held that the position of the former Minister of Information, Professor Jerry Gana in section 18 of the party’s amended constitution contravenes the Electoral Acts stipulation for the validity of a candidate in any election.
The court also held that the amendment relied upon by professor Gana did not take effect until October 8, 2018, two days after its ratification and the election of Mr Duke as the party’s candidate in line with section 222 of the Electoral Act.
An High court sitting in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja had on December 14, 2018, declared Professor Gana, as the winner of the presidential primary of the SDP.
Justice Hussein Baba-Yusuf made the declaration on Friday in his ruling and nullified the candidacy of former Cross River State Governor, Donald Duke, as the party’s flagbearer.
Hours after the judgement, Professor Gana commended the ruling of the court while addressing a news conference elsewhere in the nation’s capital.
According to him, the verdict of the court is a victory for democracy and party politics as the culture of imposition of candidates by political parties is no longer fashionable.
The former minister said he was in full support of the peace accord initiated by the National Peace Committee led by General Abdulsalami Abubakar.He added that he was ever prepared for a peaceful process in the forthcoming general elections.
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