Nigeria News

NIGERIA: Buhari Opposes Suit Seeking His Disqualification

The presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), General Muhammadu Buhari (rtd), on Monday challenged the two suits filed against him at the Federal High Court  in Abuja seeking to disqualify him from contesting in the forthcoming presidential polls over alleged certificate forgery and perjury.

One Chike Okafor and Max Ozoaka had in separate suits approached the court seeking to stop Buhari.

The court had last week granted an order of substituted service of court processes on Buhari in the two suits.

At the resumed hearing yesterday, Buhari through his counsel, Wole Olanipekun (SAN) who led about seven other Senior Advocates of Nigeria, told the court that he opposed  the suit in its entirety.

He also asked the court to set aside the  order for substituted service granted in favour of the plaintiffs.

Olanipekun also told the court that his client was still within time to file his process.

He thereby prayed for a short adjournment to enable him file his defence to the suit.

Also, counsel to APC, Lateef Fagbemi (SAN), who appeared with Funke Aboyade (SAN), submitted that with the postponement of the elections as announced by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on Saturday, there was no urgency in the matter and as such the order for substituted service be set aside.

He also sought a short adjournment to enable him file his process to the suit.
Plaintiffs in the two suits did not oppose  the request for adjournment.
The trial judge, Justice Adeniyi Ademola after listening to all the parties, adjourned till February 23 for hearing of all pending applications.
Okafor premised his suit on the grounds that there was no evidence that Buhari possessed the academic qualifications he claimed.

Okafor, via an originating summons is asking for an order compelling INEC to remove or delete the name of Buhari and his party, APC in the list of persons and political parties eligible to contest for the office of President.

Listed in the suit are Buhari, APC and INEC as first to third defendant.
He wanted  the court to hold that the information contained in Buhari’s  Form C.F 001 stating that his educational qualification in the West African School Leaving Certificate (WASC) is false and was thereby disqualified from contesting in the 2015 general election.

He also wanted the court to declare that the information contained in Buhari’s affidavit dated November 24, 2014 stating that the Secretary, Military Board was in custody of his WASC was false and was thereby disqualified from contesting in 2015 general election.

Also, the plaintiff wanted Buhari disqualified from contesting the general election by reason of giving false information on oath in his Form C.F 001 and the affidavit dated November 24, 2014.

In the other suit filed by Ozoaka, the plaintiff raised eight questions for the court’s determination, praying for an order disqualifying Buhari from contesting or participating in the election.

The plaintiff had submitted that INEC FORM CF 001 which Buhari submitted to INEC was incomplete because he allegedly failed to accompany the form with all relevant academic credentials.

The plaintiff also raised objections as regards some of the information contained in other documents submitted by Buhari, which included his voter’s card.

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