Court has power to dismiss Shettima-Clarke .’s suit of defiance

September 7th, 2023

Robert Clarke, Senior Advocate of Nigeria and elder statesman, asserts that the five-member Presidential Petition Election Tribunal (PEPT) panel led by Justice Haruna Tsammani’s ruling on the Allied Peoples Movement (APM) petition challenging Vice President Kashim Shettima’s qualifications was correct.

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Gistlover recalls that the Tribunal rejected the plea on Wednesday on the grounds that the question of qualification or disqualification is a pre-election issue that ought to have been debated prior to the presidential election.

The question of eligibility or ineligibility is a constitutional one. The question of qualification or disqualification arises prior to the election. Before the election can take place, it needs to be decided. Tsammani stated, “This court has no jurisdiction to hear the matter, and even if it does, it is barred from doing so because it is a pre-election matter.”

Clarke stated that it was evident that the case brought by the APM to disqualify Shettima was not within the Tribunal’s jurisdiction when he spoke as a guest on the Arise News TV program and responded to the dismissal of the matter.

However, he stated that the party who has been wronged has the right to appeal to the Supreme Court.

“The Constitution only grants the Tribunal the authority to investigate the conduct of an election, not matters that are not related to the election.

However, I’m implying that there are two sides to every coin. The litigants have received the Tribunal’s verdict, but they can still appeal to the Supreme Court, regardless of whether the case is pre-election related.

The Tribunal has a valid point. I declare my acceptance of the Tribunal’s verdict without hesitation. Clarke stated, “Our constitution may be applied by either party by virtue of the provision of our own law.”