March 20, 2019

Press Statement

Was The Presidential Election Free, Fair & Credible?

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The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has petitioned the National judicial
Council over the violation of the Constitution and Electoral Act by
Justice Ekwo Inyang of the Federal High Court by sitting on a matter
that ought to have been handled by an election petition tribunal, as
created by the provisions of our laws.

The party noted that in granting an exparte order stopping the
Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) from concluding the
governorship election in Bauchi State, Justice Inyang violated Section
87(11) of the Electoral Act, which states that no court has the power or
jurisdiction to stop any election pending the determination of a suit.

In an affidavit sworn to by the PDP’s National Chairman, Prince Uche
Secondus, in Abuja, the party notes that issues of collation of results
and declaration of winner, is a post-election event and, therefore,
falls under the Electoral Act and Constitutional provisions for the
election petition tribunal.

The affidavit states, “Despite this clear provision of the law, Justice
Ekwo decided to hear the application of Alhaji Mohammed Abubakar and his
political party, the All Progressives Congress (APC), within twenty four
hours on 19th March, 2019 and issued an order on INEC not to continue
with the election until the case before him is finally decided.

“That the collation of results is a post-election event and under
section 87(11) of the Electoral Act, no court has the power or
jurisdiction to stop any election pending the determination of a suit.

“That an election includes voting, collation of results and the
declaration of results.

“That as a result of the order on the Independent National Electoral
Commission, the conclusion of the Bauchi State Governorship election
which was to take place on 19th March 2019 was stalled.

“That the order of Justice Ekwo was made contrary to the provisions of
the Constitution of Nigeria, 1999 as amended dealing without fair
hearing and also section 87(11) of the Electoral Act.

“That the Chief Justice of Nigeria has constituted the various Election
Petition Tribunals in Nigeria to handle such cases and the assumption of
jurisdiction by Justice Inyang Ekwo is an affront to the constitution
and electoral wishes of the people of Tafawa Balewa Local Government
Area and Bauchi State”

The PDP insists that not only did Justice Inyang violate the clear
provisions of the Electoral Act, the motion granted is also an affront
to the electoral wishes of the people of Bauchi State who have clearly
chosen their next governor in voting for the PDP’s candidate, Sen. Bala
Mohammed.

The PDP urges the NJC to save our democracy by taking an urgent step
against the violations by Justice Inyang.

Signed:

Kola Ologbondiyan
National Publicity Secretary
And
Director, Media & Publicity
PDP Presidential Campaign Organization