May 29: Buhari, AGF shun suit seeking to stop Tinubu’s inauguration

May 29: Buhari, AGF shun suit seeking to stop Tinubu’s inauguration

President Muhammadu Buhari and the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF), Abubakar Malami (SAN) on Friday shunned hearing in a suit seeking to stop the inauguration of the President-elect, Bola Ahmed Tinubu on May 29.  Continue Reading>>>

Buhari and AGF who are the first and second respondents in the suit filed by a former Presidential candidate, Chief Ambrose Albert Owuro did not file any process or have any legal representation at the hearing of the suit at the Court of Appeal, Abuja Division, despite been served with hearing notice.

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), which conducted the 2019 Presidential election, which was the subject of dispute asked the Court of Appeal to dismiss the case of Owuro who claimed to be adjudged the constitutional winner of the 2019 Presidential election.  Continue Reading>>>

The electoral body which is the 3rd respondent in the appeal described Owuru’s claim as frivolous, baseless, irritating and unwarranted.

Represented by a lawyer, Hassan Halilu, INEC faulted the claims of Owuru and urged the appellate Court to dismiss it with heavy cost for lacking in merit.

On his part, the President-elect, Bola Tinubu who joined the suit as an interested party at the Court of Appeal argued that the claims of Owuru to the 2019 Presidential election was not only strange but baseless, frivolous and un- meritorious.

Tinubu through his counsel, Adelani Ajibade from the Chamber of Chief Wole Olanipekun (SAN) told the three-man panel of the Court of Appeal that the purported constitutional rights being claimed and asserted by the former Presidential candidate had been extinguished by a Supreme Court judgment which nullified his petition filed against the 2019 Presidential election.

The President-elect whose brief of argument was filed on May 19 demanded outright dismissal of the suit with N20 million cost to be paid to the respondents by Owuru and his party, Hope Democratic Party (HDP).

Meanwhile, Justice Jamil Tukur who headed the three-member panel of justice in the hearing of the matter has adjourned judgment indefinitely.

Justice Tukur said parties in the appeal would be communicated as soon as the judgment is ready.

Before the hearing of the suit, Justice Tukur ordered Owuru to vacate the seat reserved for only Senior Advocates of Nigeria members of the Nigerian Bar Association.

Justice Tukur upon sighting Owuru sitting on the reserved seat, challenged him on when he became a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, to which Owuru answered in the negative.

Attempts by Owurou to persuade the court to consider his position as a senior lawyer in the country were rejected by Justice Tukur who told the former presidential candidate that even if he is “as old as Methuselah in the Bar”, as a lawyer, he is not entitled to be on the seat reserved for Senior Advocates only.

Owuru who was called to the Nigerian Bar in 1982 had in a fresh motion on notice prayed the Court of Appeal to stop President Muhammadu Buhari, AGF and NEC from inaugurating the 2023 President-elect on May 29.

The politician who participated in the 2019 presidential poll on the platform of Hope Democratic Party wanted Buhari, AGF and INEC stopped from taking any further steps on the 2023 presidential election that produced Tinubu as winner.

Owuru who claimed to be adjudged Constitutional winner of the 2019 presidential election predicated his grouse against inauguration of Tinubu or anybody else as successor to Buhari on the ground that he is the constitutionally adjudged winner of the 2019 election and has not spent his tenure as required by law.

Among others, Owuru insisted that President Buhari has been usurping his tenure of office since 2019 because the Supreme Court has not determined his petition filed in 2019 in which he challenged the purported declaration of Buhari as the election winner.

In his motion on notice marked CA/CV/259/2023, Owuru applied for “An order of prohibitory injunction compelling Buhari, AGF and INEC, their servants, agents and privies to preserve and give due cognizance and abstain from any further undertaking or engaging in any act of usurpation of adjudged acquired Constitutional rights and mandate as winner of the 2019 presidential election”.

He also applied for another order directing and placing on notice that any form of handover inauguration, organized and Superintendent by Buhari on 29th May 2023 outside his adjudged winner of the 2019 presidential election, subject of the pending appeal remains and is viewed as an “interim place holder” administration arranged pending the hearing and determination of his substantive appeal on constitutional interpretation thereof.

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