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Supreme Court Strikes Out Buhari's Suit Challenging Electoral Act Clause

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The Supreme Court has struck out a suit challenging Section 84 sub-section 12 of the Electoral Act, 2022.

The suit was filed by President Muhammadu Buhari and the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami.

A seven-judge bench of the apex court, led by Musa Dattijo-Muhammad, unanimously struck out the suit, describing it as an abuse of court process.

Justice Aokmaye Agim, who delivered the lead judgement, held that President Buhari, having earlier assented to section 84 (12) of the Electoral Act 2022, cannot turn around to approach the court to strike it down.

He stressed that the request by President Buhari that the National Assembly should delete the provision amounted to constitutional violation.

Justice Agim described the suit as a ploy by the president to get the court to validate the violation.

In the suit, filed on April 29, 2022, the applicants asked the apex court to void sector 84 (12) of the act.

The National Assembly is listed as the sole respondent in the suit.

Section 84 (12) of the Electoral Act, 2022 states that “No political appointee at any level shall be a voting delegate or be voted for at the convention or congress of any political party for the purpose of the nomination of candidates for any election.”

President Buhari relied on this section of the Act when he asked members of his cabinet vying for elective offices to resign before the primaries of the All Progressives Congress (APC).

It was signed into law in February by the president who shortly after, asked the National Assembly to delete the clause in the Electoral Act.

The parliament declined the president’s request.

It has since then been a subject of litigation and political debate in Nigeria.


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