It’s not impossible for S’Court to nullify Tinubu’s election – Falana
All the parties need to do is to prepare adequately for the cases and present watertight arguments to convince the justices, Femi Falana, Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), said on Sunday, as he weighed in on the legal tussle over the victory of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu in the February 25 presidential election.
Tinubu of the All Progressives Congress (APC), is being challenged by the both Atiku Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Peter Obi of the Labour Party (LP), who were his major opponents at the election, in which he was declared winner by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
There had been a wild-spread doubt in the Nigerian polity that the legal challenge would be futile, given that no presidential election had ever been upturned by a tribunal in the history of the country, no matter the level of obvious electoral infractions.
But putting a lie to the contention, Falana, a human rights activist and fiery social justice crusader, while vowing not not to join his colleagues to rubbish the integrity of Nigerian courts, which he said had become rife of recent, told his host, while appearing on Sunday Politics, a current affairs programme on Channels Television, described as fallacy of generalisation, what many commentators had embarked on recently.
He said: “I’m not going to join some of my colleagues who are rubbishing the court. I go to court on a daily basis. If I have a problem with any court or any judge for that matter, what I’m required to do is to write a petition to the National Judicial Council. But I cannot for goodness sake embark on what I call a fallacy of generalisation to say ‘Oh, Nigerian courts are bad, Nigerian judges will not dispense justice.’
“For me, once you prepare your case, I don’t think there should be any cause for alarm. Elections have been annulled in Nigeria by our courts. Our courts have ordered rerun elections. One of them, I think the case of Buhari and Yar’Adua; the president-elect then escaped narrowly. It was a decision of four to three justices of the Supreme Court… the elections of 2007, the winner of the election, the late President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua, did say the election was highly flawed. In some of the states, not less than five elections were annulled and rerun elections were ordered.”
He however, joined in the demand for the proceedings of the legal battle at the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal (PEPT) to be beamed live on television, saying: “I have always campaigned for that. That is the trend in Africa — in Ghana and Kenya — the proceedings are televised because judges should have nothing to hide.
“Invite the media and members of the public. Once there is order in the court, everybody should be part of it because we were all part of the election. So the decision of the court on the election should not be shrouded in secrecy. For that reason, I support the call by the president of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Yakubu Maikyau (SAN), that the proceedings should be televised. It is in the interest of our judges, and the public.”
BREAKING: All clear for Tinubu! S’Court dismisses PDP’s double nomination suit *Says, PDP a busy-body
For being a meddlesome interloper and a busy-body in bringing a case that was none of its business, the Supreme Court, on Friday slammed a N2million fine on the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), over its suit demanding that the ticket of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the February 25 presidential election be vitiated.
The main opposition party, had claimed that Kashim Shettima, being a candidate in a Senatorial election in Borno and as well as the running mate to Bola Ahmed Tinubu, the APC presidential candidate in the election, amounted to double Nomination, which is forbidden by the law.
Based on that, the prayed the apex court to declare the ticket null and void and the votes recorded for it in the election, through which they were declared winner by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), wasted, a prayer, which if it had succeeded, would pave the way for Atiku Abubakar, the candidate of the party in the election to take over from Tinubu as the 16th President on Monday, when he is due to be inaugurated.
But the court, while dismissing the prayers, which originated from the Federal High Court Abuja, and travelled through the Court of Appeal, before it, agreeing with the positions of the lower courts which dismissed them on the ground of lacking in locus standi to institute the case.
But, Justice Adamu Jauro who read the Judgement, not only held that the PDP acted as meddlesome Interloper and a busy body as it is an internal affair of the APC, ordered the main opposition party to pay N2milllion, for its troubles, after establishing that its arguments tended to misleading the court, which was “sad”.
The court, which said it was aware of the case of Uche Nwosu, former governorship candidate in Imo State, the court, held that it did not applay in the instant case, as it agreed that Shettima withdrew his senate nomination on 6th July 2022 and was subsequently replaced and therefore, was no longer a candidate for the Senate before he picked up the running mate ticket, thus, making the allegation of multiple nomination untenable.
On the other hand, the court, held that Nwosu in his case, got nominated by two political parties for different positions, and having not being on all fours, PDP suit, was bound to fail right from the trial court, to the Court of Appeal, and the Supreme Court.
Accusing the PDP of attempts to use the social media to set a trap for the apex court to blackmail it, which he said was “painful, unfortunate and uncalled for,” the court said a political party had no right to challenge the action of another party, or the decision of INEC, in respect of another party, adding that for a person to have locus standi to challenge the nomination process of a political party, the person must be a neutral person and an aspirant to that position, and a member of the party.
Nigerians must allow the love they share abroad resonate at home – Obasanjo
Former President Olusegun Obasanjo is worried that the level of love Nigerians abroad share among themselves is not replicated at home, adding that a situation where they are quick to become friends outside and enemies at home, must be stop. The former President, who acknowledged how Nigerians in the diaspora were making the country proud in their different areas of endeavour, told participants at an evening reception held at New Brunswick, New Jersey, USA, that Nigerians in the diaspora must conduct themselves as good citizens wherever they domiciled.
Obasanjo, whose views were captured in a statement by, Kehinde Akinyemi, his spokesman, expressed satisfaction over the unity exhibited among Nigerians in the United States of America, urging them to reciprocate such togetherness when they are back home.
The former President, said to have spoken on behalf of a delegation of eminent traditional leaders and academics that included the Olowu of Owu Kingdom, Oba Saka Matemilola, was quoted as saying: “Nigerian nationals are often very united when they are abroad, but something else when they return to the country, therefore, I want to urge all to be good citizens, not only where you are, but when also you come home to Nigeria.”
Uproar, social media exchange of fire, over Ooni’s handshake with Pete Edochie, KOK
The exchange of handshakes between veteran actors Pete Edochie and Kanayo O. Kanayo with Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyey Ogunwusi Enitan, has spurred a flurry of reactions on social media, The Nation, is reporting.
The paper, which reviewed the viral video shared on Thursday, where Edochie and Kanayo approached Ooni’s table at Elizabeth Jack Rich’s 40th birthday party on Tuesday and exchanged Igbo “cultural” handshakes with the monarch, acknowledged the different meanings being read into it.
Social media users on Twitter took to the comment section of the video with some knocking the actors for disrespecting the tradition by exchanging handshakes with the monarch, while others praised Ooni for showing respect to the Igbo culture.
Man of Letters said: “Igbakeji Oorisa?! It’s acceptable that he received the cross-culture respect handshake with Pete Edochie because the man Pete carry, but what’s his excuse for doing it with Kanayo O Kanayo??”
Kelvin Odanz said. “Is this ceremony holding in the Ooni palace? I mean, if an Igbo man (from a culture that doesn’t bow to another man) meets the Ooni in the UK for instance, is it disrespectful if he chooses to greet the respected Oba in a way he was brought up to respect dignitaries?”
Another user Onyemauchi tweeted: “This man supposed be King for him community”
Another tweep tracesorba wrote: “Igbos don’t bow down to any man, An evolved or wise man is their our own Chi.”