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Abuja lawyer prays court to disqualify Buhari over certificate

By Seye Olumide, Bertram Nwannekanma (Lagos) and Charles Ogugbuaja (Owerri)   |   26 January 2015   |   8:24 pm  

Buhari-11-1-2015

• APGA faction adopts Jonathan, Ihedioha

• Rep canvasses support for Buhari 

THE controversy trailing the academic certificate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential candidate, Gen. Muhammadu  Buhari, has taken a new dimension sas a lawyer, Mr. Chike Okafor, approached the Federal High Court, Abuja praying it  to disqualify Buhari from contesting the 2015 presidential election.

  The suit is predicated on Section 131 of the Constitution which prescribes a minimum qualification for nomination to participate in presidential elections and Section 31 of the Electoral Act which stipulates that all presidential candidates depose to an affidavit in proof of compliance with constitutional requirement to be president of Nigeria. 

  In the suit, the lawyer claims that Buhari failed to prove that he has the minimum educational qualification to run for the post of president.

 The claimant further claims that Gen. Buhari’s affidavit that he possesses the West African School Leaving Certificate (WASC) are false, as not only did he not attach it to his nomination form as compulsorily required, but his claim that the certificates are in the custody of the Military has been denied by the Director of Army Public Relations, Brigadier General Olajide Laleye.

 Consequently, the lawyer requested the Federal High Court to disqualify Buhari from contesting at the 2015 general Elections.

 According to Okafor, Section 31(5) of the Electoral Act  allows a person that has reasonable grounds to believe that false information has been given by a candidate in his affidavit or document submitted to INEC, in support of his nomination form, to approach the court for the candidate to be disqualified.

 Meanwhile, the factional national chairman of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), Chief Ejike Uche, some members of the Board of Trustees (BoT) and National Working Committee (NWC) of the party have thrown their weight behind President Goodluck Jonathan’s re-election bid. 

   The APGA leaders also declared support for the Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governorship candidate in Imo State, Chief Emeka Ihedioha.

  Addressing journalists in Owerri, Uche, said he acted based on the outcome of the meeting they held at the premises of the All Saints Cathedral Church, Egbu, Owerri North, urging all members of APGA and the Imo electorate to demonstrate their support for Jonathan and Ihedioha and cast their votes for them in the forthcoming elections. 

  The position of the Uche-led faction came on the heels of the Sunday adoption of Ihedioha by the immediate past governor of Imo State, and an aspirant in the governorship race on the platform of the PDP in December 8, 2014 primaries, Chief Ikedi Ohakim, at his country home in Okohia, Isiala Mbano Local Council, of the state. 

   At the briefing, Uche, who was flanked by other leaders of his faction, said the position of the group in his party was purely on coalition basis and not merger issue. He urged the public not to misrepresent the position.

    Meanwhile, the Minority Leader of the House of Representatives and member of Buhari Campaign Organisation, Mr. Femi Gbajabiamila has urged Nigerians to queue behind the APC candidate on account of what he called Buhari’s his anti-corruption history.

 Speaking during an interactive session with tradesmen and artisans in Surulere area of Lagos yesterday, Gbajabiamila said:  “The forthcoming Presidential election is a contest between a man mismanaging Nigeria’s resources and another with robust anti-corruption history.

 “I have sat down to look at all problems hindering  the progress of Nigeria and discovered they are all traceable to corruption. God has now given us our messiah because sometimes God in his own wisdom would allow his own people to go through hardship until such a time when he would pick the most unlikely amongst them to the deliver others from bondage.”

I am convinced that Buhari has been chosen by God to deliver our nation from shackles of bondage and relieve us from the oppressive yoke of today.

  “I believe this is the man capable of cleaning up this country and who will deliver to us a new Nigeria where $20billion would no longer walk or $15million in cash fly to South Africa.”



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