The Court of Appeal in Abuja has dismissed an appeal filed by Action Alliance (AA) against All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential candidate Senator Bola Tinubu.
The action, which also named the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the All Progressives Congress (APC) as defendants, sought Tinubu’s disqualification from the 2023 election on the grounds that he falsified his University of Chicago diploma.
AA further asserted that Tinubu’s claim to have attended Government College, Ibadan is fake, arguing that he is ineligible to run for president.
They petitioned the court for “a declaration that, pursuant to Sections 224, 23, and 24 of the 1999 Constitution and the constitution of the APC, the president of Nigeria must be a man of integrity and impeccable character.”
Previously, in a ruling issued on December 13, 2022, the trial court ruled that the plaintiff’s lawsuit is time-barred.
However, in an appeal filed on December 21, 2022 and labeled CA/ABJ/CV/ 1475/ 2022, the AA requested that the trial court’s verdict be overturned.
In defense of the appeal, Babatunde Ogala (SAN), on behalf of the 2nd respondent and APC, filed the 2nd respondent brief of argument and a notice of preliminary objection asserting: The appellant brief of argument is time-barred and the appeal is academic.
When the appeal was called for hearing on February 3, 2023, Julius O. Ishola, on behalf of the APC, adopted the notice of preliminary objection and 2nd respondent’s brief of argument and urged the court to dismiss the appeal for lack of merit.
In response to the notice and brief, the appellant’s counsel filed a reply brief and adopted it, requesting the court to reject the stated objections and grant the appeal.
In its decision, the Court of Appeal unanimously agreed with the 2nd and 3rd respondents’ counsel and dismissed the appeal for being time-barred, having been submitted more than 22 years after the alleged cause of action occurred.
In addition, the court stated that the appellant lacked standing to file the lawsuit and characterized it as a meddlesome invader.
Alex Enumah in Abuja