The Supreme Court on Friday dismissed an appeal by the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) challenging the eligibility of the President-elect, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, of the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, to contest the presidential election that held on February 25 for been frivolous and lacking merit.
In dismissing the appeal, the apex court in a unanimous judgment described the PDP as a busy body and middle interloper who dabbled into the domestic affairs of the All Progressives Congress(APC).
Justice Adamu Jauro who delivered the lead judgment consequently held that the PDP lacked the requisite locus standi to have initiated the action.
The Apex court equally held that the PDP failed to provide any scintilla of evidence that Shettima engaged in double nomination.
‘It is abundantly clear that the appellant (PDP) in the totality of its position in the instant case, is peeping and poke nosing into the affairs of another party as a busy body and meddlesome interloper.
The PDP in its appeal, marked SC/CV/501/2023, sought to disqualify Tinubu and the Vice President-elect, Senator Kashim Shettima.
PDP contended that the manner the APC and Tinubu nominated Shettima as a vice presidential candidate for the election was in gross breach of the provisions of Sections 29(1), 33, 35 and 84(1) and (2) of the Electoral Act, 2022, as amended.
It told the court that there was evidence to establish that Shettima was nominated twice, both for the vice presidential position and Borno Central senatorial seat, an action the PDP maintained was in contravention of the law.
For asking the court to nullify Tinubu and Shettima’s candidacy, the appellant equally applied for an order to compel the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, to expunge their names from the list of nominated or sponsored candidates that were eligible to contest the presidential poll.
The respondents queried the locus-standi (legal right) of the PDP to institute the action, as well as the jurisdiction of the court to dabble into the issue of nomination of a candidate for an election, which they argued bordered on the domestic affair of a political party.
The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP and its candidate in the 2023 presidential election, Atiku Abubakar had approached the court to seek the disqualification of Tinubu and Shettima over the contending issue of double nominations, claiming that same violated Electoral Act.
The appellant based its appeal on the grounds that the appellate court erred in law when it dismissed its appeal and upheld a trial court’s decision that the litigation was incompetent and without merit.