The Presidential Election Petition Court, PEPC, sitting in Abuja, had dismissed as incompetent, the case the Allied Peoples Movement, APM, filed to nullify President Bola Tinubu’s election.
The court held that issues the APM raised in its petition contained pre-election matters that could only be determined by the Federal High Court. Chairman of the panel, Justice Haruna Tsammani, who read the ruling, upheld preliminary objections that all the Respondents raised to challenge the competence of the petition.
Justice Haruna noted that since the petition centered on the qualification of President Tinubu to contest the presidential election that held on February 25, the APM, ought to have gone to court within 14 days after Tinubu was nominated by the All Progressives Congress, APC.
He held that since the cause of action bordered on a pre-election matter, the APM, lacked the locus standi to challenge Tinubu’s nomination and stated that where an election had already been conducted and result declared, the qualification of a candidate could no longer be challenged on the basis of sections 131 and 137 of the Constitution.
Speaking further, Justice Tsammani held that the Supreme Court had earlier decided that a political party does not have the right to challenge a nomination that was made by another political party.
However, the court held that the issue of double nomination as canvassed by the APM, was not a legally cognizable ground for disqualification.