Leaders of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) are threatening to stop with a court’s order President Muhammadu Buhari’s inauguration until the determination of the petition challenging the President’s victory in the February 23 election.
The Presidency has dismissed the threat as “unserious” and dared the PDP to launch its legal battle.
The main opposition party was reacting yesterday to the plethora of court cases filed against the announcement of results of the March 9 governorship and state Assembly elections in Bauchi and Rivers states by candidates of the President’s party, the All Progressives Congress (APC).
Governor Mohammed Abubakar (APC) of Bauchi State has obtained an ex parte order at the Federal High Court stopping the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) from concluding the governorship election.
A similar court case was filed by the governorship candidate of the African Action Congress (AAC) in Rivers State, Mr Awara Biokpomabo, seeking an order of the court to stop INEC from releasing the results of the governorship election in the state.
But the PDP, which believes that its candidate, Governor Nyesom Wike, won the election, alleged that the case filed by the AAC and its candidate was instigated by the APC.
The PDP has filed a petition with the National Judicial Council (NJC) against Justice Ekwo Inyang who granted the Bauchi governor the order, inciting a violation of the Constitution and Section 87(10) of the Electoral Act.
The said provision of the Electoral Act prescribes that no court has the power or jurisdiction to stop any election pending the determination of a suit.
The National Chairman of the PDP, Prince Uche Secondus, who decried the action of the petitioners, expressed concerns over hiccups in the conduct of the 2019 general elections.
The party, at an emergency National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting in Abuja yesterday, complained about the inability of INEC to conclude the elections in record time.
The PDP chieftains were particularly miffed that almost two weeks after, INEC could not conclude the governorship and state assembly elections that were held on March 9.
Winners of the governorship elections are yet to be declared in seven states where the polls were “inconclusive”. The states are Kano, Sokoto, Benue, Plateau, Adamawa and Bauchi states. The concluding part of the elections is billed to hold in the states on Saturday.
The governorship election in Rivers state has become a subject of legal rigmarole by interested parties following the suspension of the announcement of the results.