The Presidential Election Petition Tribunal has told the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its candidate, Atiku Abubakar, to formally file an application asking the President of the Court of Appeal and chairman of the five-man panel, Justice Zainab Bulkachuwa, to withdraw.
The tribunal gave the directive on Wednesday following the meeting the panel members held with lawyers appearing in the case.
Justice Bulkachuwa said that the petitioners’ legal team led by Dr Livy Uzoukwu (SAN), asked her to recuse herself from the panel at the meeting held in chambers.
The Appeal Court president said the request by Uzoukwu followed an earlier letter she received from the PDP’s National Chairman, Uche Secondus, also demanding she disqualifies herself from further participation in the panel.
Bulkachuwa said since the matter was already in the public domain, the panel had decided to have the issue treated openly.
Responding, Uzoukwu said his team would file a formal application to that effect on Thursday.
The respondents’ lawyers comprising Wole Olanipekun (SAN), Yunus Usman (SAN) and Lateef Fagbemi (SAN) representing President Muhammadu Buhari, the Independent National Electoral Commission, and the All Progressives Congress, said they would need time to respond to the application.
She then adjourned till May 22 for the hearing of the petitioners’ application.
Oshiomhole Withdraws Suit Challenging Suspension
Former National Chairman, All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Adams Oshiomhole has withdrawn his application for stay of execution of the June 16 , 2020 of the Court of Appeal which affirmed his suspension as party boss.
He withdrew the application on Tuesday to show his acceptance of the dissolution of the National Working Committee (NWC), his lawyers said. Recall that the APC National Executive Council (NEC) at an emergency meeting last Thursday dissolved the NWC and appointed a caretaker committee.
A three-man panel of justices Justice Eunice Onyemenam unanimously dismissed the motion on Tuesday after it was withdrawn.
In November 2019, Oshiomhole was suspended by his Etsako Ward 10 in Edo State over anti-party activities.
Relying on that suspension, a High Court of the FCT on March 4 ordered Oshiomhole to stop parading himself as APC National Chairman.
When Oshiomhole approached the Court of Appeal, a three-man panel of justices led by Justice Onyemenam on June 16 affirmed the lower court’s ruling.
But Oshiomhole appealed to the Supreme Court and filed a motion for stay of execution of the judgment before the Court of Appeal.
While the application was pending before the Appeal Court, the APC NEC dissolved the Oshiomhole-led NWC.
Through his counsel, Ahmed Raji (SAN), the ex-party boss withdrew the application before the appellate court.
BREAKING: APC Caretaker Committee Holds Inaugural Meeting In Abuja
The ruling All Progressive Congress (APC) Caretaker/Extra-Ordinary Convention Committee holds it’s inaugural meeting on Monday at the National Executive Committee (NEC) room at the party’s National Secretariat on Abuja.
The meeting is about to commence.
Among the early arrived are the Secretary of the committee, Senator John Akpan Udoedege, Niger State Governor, Alhaji Abubakar Sani Bello, former Senate President, Ken Nnamani and the Chairman of the committee, Governir Mai Mala Buni of Your State.
Sources close to the party Secretariat said that the former deputy National Secretary, Victor Giadom will present a handing over note to the committee.
I Am Happy APC Is In Crisis — Wike
Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike has reacted to the leadership crisis in the All Progressives Congress, APC.
Appearing on Arise Television, the governor said the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, would benefit from the crisis in the APC.
The governor explained that he wants PDP to return to power, hence, we will continue to pray that APC remains in crisis.
He said, “I am happy that APC is in crisis. It is not my business to help APC to be united.
“Remember that we also had our own crisis under Ali Modu Sheriff and APC jubilated about it then. It is my prayer that they should continue to be in crisis. We have taken another state.
“Unfortunately, APC isn’t really a political party. They came together just to take over power.
“I want my party to be in power and therefore, I cannot be praying for APC not to have crisis. I hope they continue to make mistakes every day, and my party will continue to grow.”
Recall that the suspension of APC National Leader, Adams Oshiomhole by an Appeal Court had led to a leadership crisis in the party.
Following the crisis, the party’s National Executive Council, NEC, had dissolved its National Working Committee, NWC, led by Oshiomhole.
The party’s NEC immediately constituted a caretaker committee to ensure the smooth running of the party till its National convention.
APC’s NEC appointed the Yobe State Governor, Mai Mala Buni, to head the Caretaker Committee.
During the meeting, President Muhammadu Buhari urged aggrieved members to suspend all court matters in the interest of the party.
The president had lamented that the party’s fortune was in jeopardy, hence the need for unity.
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