Moves to transfer Jonathan's eligibility case to Appeal Court blocked

Moves to transfer Jonathan's eligibility case to Appeal Court blocked

Monday, December 15, 2014 2:51 pm

Nnamdi Felix / Abuja

Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mohammed Adoke, on Monday, opposed an application brought before a federal high court in Abuja by Mr. Olatoye Wahab and Mr. Adejumo Mansouri Ajegbe, asking that their suit on the eligibility of President Goodluck Jonathan to contest the forthcoming presidential election be transferred to the Court of Appeal for determination.

Wahab and Ajegbe had approached the federal court asking it to determine whether by the combined effect of section 135(2) (a) and (b) of the Nigerian Constitution, a person sworn into office of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria on two previous terms is deemed to have been elected to that office at two previous elections.

They are also asking the court to determine whether the President can present himself for the purpose of being elected as the President having participated as a candidate and emerged winner at two previous presidential election on account of which Jonathan would have spent a commutative period more than 8 years prescribed by the constitution.

The Attorney General opposed the application noting that the federal court is constitutionally empowered to interpret the constitution and ought to determine the case pending before it which borders on interpretation of constitutional provision. He averred that referring the case to the Court of Appeal will amount to abandoning it’s responsibility and transferring same to the appellate court.

He urged the court to first give its decision on the matter before it can proceed to the appellate court.

The trial judge, Justice Ahmed Ramat Mohammed, thereafter adjourned to 12th of January 2015 to rule on the application.

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