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PEPC: Court Strikes Out APM’s Suit Against VP Shettima

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The Presidential Election Petition Tribunal (PEPT) has thrown out a suit brought before it by the Allied Peoples Movement (APM) seeking the disqualification of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu and Vice President Kashim Shettima.

APM had contended that Tinubu and Shettima were not validly nominated to contest the February 25. They argue that by the combined reading of sections 131(c) and 142(2) of the Nigerian Constitution, 1999 and Section 133 of the Electoral Act made them to invalid.

They contend that when Kabiru Masari announced his withdrawal as an APC placeholder on June 24, 2022 to the date Shettima’s name was forwarded to INEC on July 14, 2022, was 21 days which breached Section 33 of the Electoral Act, 2022, which provides for 14 days for the replacement of a candidate for an election.

However, reading the lead judgment on Wednesday, Justice Haruna Tsammani held that the issues brought before the tribunal are pre-election matters, which ought to have been at a high court.

He added that the timeframe of 180 days within which to determine the issue had elapsed.

“In Alhassan and others versus Ishaku and others, it was held that an election tribunal has no jurisdiction on the primary of a political party,” he said.

He said the matters of qualification and disqualification are guided by the provisions of sections 131 and 137(1)(a)(j) of the Nigerian Constitution.

He held that the issue complained of was an internal affair of a political party.

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