The Supreme Court of Nigeria has dismissed a suit filed by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) seeking to stop the inauguration of President-elect, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu and Vice President-elect, Kashim Shettima, over alleged double nomination by Shetimma ahead of the 2023 general elections
The five-member panel led by Justice John Okoro, accordingly upheld the judgment of the Court of Appeal and the Federal High Court both in Abuja, which dismissed the appellant’s case for lack of locus standi.
The court also slammed a fine of N2million on PDP for interfering in the internal affairs of the All Progressives Congress, APC in the conduct of its primary elections and nomination of its candidates.
Justice Jauro agreed with Tinubu’s lawyer, Prince Lateef Fagbemi (SAN) that PDP acted as busy body and meddlesome interloper in the ways and manners it dabbled into APC’S affairs unjustly.
Besides, the apex court held that the case of the appellant has become statute barred having run beyond the 180 days permitted by law hence, it cannot delve into the merit of the case.
The Apex Court held that apart from the fact that PDP lacked requisite jurisdiction to institute the suit, the party also failed to provide scintilla of evidence that Shetima engaged in double nomination.
The claim of PDP on the alleged double nomination of the Vice President-elect was described as most unfortunate and a clear deliberate mischief to mislead the Court and the country.
The Supreme Court also held that no matter the pains of PDP on how APC conducted it’s primary election and nominated its candidates, PDP must remain onlooker.
“It is abundantly clear that the Appellant (PDP) in the totality of its position in the instant case, is peeping and poke nosing into the affairs of another party as a busy body and meddlesome interloper”
Specifically, the PDP had sought the disqualification of the President-elect, Tinubu, and Vice-President-elect, Senator Kashim Shettima, over alleged double nomination; an act which they say violates the Electoral Act 2022.
The appellant had anchored its appeal on the claims that the appellate court erred in law when it dismissed its appeal and affirmed the judgment of a trial court which held that the suit was incompetent and lacking in merit.
PDP is claiming that the APC breached the law when it nominated Shettima as senatorial candidate for Borno Central and as vice-presidential candidate.
But, the apex court held that PDP cannot challenge the nomination of Shettima as vice-presidential candidate because it lacked the necessary locus standi to do so, having not been an aspirant, a member of APC, nor shown any harm it suffered as a result of the nomination of Shettima as VP candidate.
The Court held that the action of PDP was painful because it used the social media to set a booby trap for the Supreme Court to blackmail it. This is most unfortunate, unwarranted and uncalled for.
Justice Jauro therfore dismissed the suit in its entirety for lack of merit.
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