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Lawsuit On Jonathan Sole Candidacy: Matters Arising

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By Edwin Uhara
Following the unanimous adoption of President Good Luck Jonathan by the

National Executive Committee (NEC) of the ruling People Democratic

Party (PDP) as its sole Presidential Candidate for next year

Presidential election at its 66th NEC meeting in Abuja last month, many

had thought that the party is now united to face the opposition All

Progressives Congress (APC) in the February 14, 2015 Presidential

election, but, with the latest news coming from the largest political

party in Africa, all is not yet uhuru.
It was reported earlier this week by a national daily that a former

governorship aspirant for Adamawa state by-election on the platform of the

People Democratic Party (PDP), Dr. Umar Ardo has filed an appeal

before the Court of Appeal Abuja, asking it to grant him leave as an

interested party to be joined in an earlier suit decided at a Federal High

Court Abuja between one Mr. Cyriacus Njoku, a member of the ruling party

and President Good Luck Jonathan. It will be recalled that, the said Njoku

had in suit no. FCT/HC/CV/2449/2012 filed before an Abuja High Court was

challenging the legality of President Good Luck Jonathan standing for an

election next year, having taken an Oath of Office twice. While delivering

judgment on the matter on March 1st 2013, the court held that President

Jonathan was eligible to contest the 2015 Presidential election. This made

Mr. Njoku to appeal the judgment which is still pending at the Court of

Appeal.
In lieu of this, Dr. Ardo is depending on the logic of the case to sue Dr.

Jonathan and the PDP for adopting him as the sole Presidential Candidate

of the party for next year Presidential election.
In the suit filed by Dr. Amuda Kannike (SAN) and Doueyi Fierikuno on

behalf of Dr. Ardo is asking the court to quash the September 8, 2014

resolution of the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the party which

endorsed President Jonathan as its sole Presidential candidate. He claimed

that his fundamental human rights as a Nigerian and as a financial member

of the PDP had been breached by the endorsement of the President by the

NEC and other organs of the party.
He has this to say: Iam desirous of contesting the election to the

office of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria which is slated

to hold on or before February 2015. And my desire is mainly built on my

conviction that the President would not be eligible to contest the said

election which would have cleared the way for a free and fair level

playing ground contest for party primary. The Court of Appeal had

subsequently fixed October 20 as a date for hearing the case.

However, while this article is not intended to pre-empt the outcome of the

suit filed by Dr. Umar Ardo before the Court, it must state categorically

that, Dr. Ardo has already jumped the gun by alleging that his desire to

vie for President is Mainly built on his conviction that the President

would not be eligible to contest for next year Presidential

election. (Sic)
Allegedly concluding that the President would not be eligible to contest

the next year Presidential election when the appeal filed on the

President eligibility for re-election next year by Mr. Cyriacus Njoku

is still pending before the Court of Appeal, leaves bitter taste in the

mouth.
Secondly, it was never reported anywhere that Dr. Umar Ardo had at any

time indicated interest to contest for President on PDP platform

before and as at the time the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the

party adopted the President as its sole Presidential candidate. Instead,

all that was reported was that, Dr. Ardo was a governorship aspirant on

the platform of the PDP for the botched October 11, 2014 Adamawa State

Governorship bye-election.
Besides, the adoption of the President as sole candidate of the party by

the NEC was not a unilateral decision, but a unanimous resolution by all

organs of the party; which includes the PDP Governors Forum and the Board

of Trustees (BOT) members of the party. And when the National Chairman of

the party, Dr. Adamu Muazu subjected the various endorsements to voice

vote, there was no objection covertly or overtly. So, from where did the

case of breaching the fundamental human rights of Dr. Ardo to vie for

President of Nigeria on the platform of the ruling People Democratic

Party (PDP) emanates from?
True answers to the above question has become very necessary because, a

national daily had earlier reported that some group of persons from

certain sections of the country have perfected plans to use multiple

litigations to cow the President from seeking re-election next year.

Besides, if I may ask, is the lawsuit instituted against the adoption of

the President as the sole candidate of the PDP for next year

Presidential election by Dr. Ardo, the first of the multiple lawsuits

against the President the first to be expected? Would they be instituting

the suits against the President rationally or on flimsy grounds? Would

illogical and incoherent multiple lawsuits against the candidacy of Dr.

Jonathan amount to abuse of judicial process? And when such abuse occur,

what would be the consequences to deter others from embarking on such

legal jaywalk?
Until cogent answers are provided to the above questions, Nigerians would

assume that this is another clandestine conspiracy against the hoi polloi

by certain elites in the country.
Comrade Edwin Uhara is a staunched supporter of the President, an Activist

and a Public Affairs Commentator.
He is also a member of PDP Project Reloaded Media Team, Abuja.

Reach him on 07065862479 or [email protected]

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