Rights Lawyer Sues FG, AGF, INEC, PDP, Atiku For N200m Each

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Tinubu and aides leaving the airport

By Chuks Eke

A human rights lawyer based in Onitsha, Anambra state, Dr. Jezie Ekejiuba has dragged the federal government to court seeking the disqualification of Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, the Presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP from contesting the 2023 Presidential election.

Joined in the suit No. FHC/AWK/CS/198/2022 filed at the Federal High Court Registry, Awka Judicial Division as second, third, fourth and fifth co-respondents are the
Attorney-General of the Federation, AGF, Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, Peoples Democratic Party, PDP and Alhaji Atiku Abubakar.

Ekejiuba who is also President of Voters Rights Association of Nigeria, VRAN is also seeking the sum of N200 million from each of the respondents as compensatory and general damages for the threatened violation and or gross violation of the Applicant’s Fundamental right to freedom from discrimination.

The suit was brought under Order 11, Rules 1 to 5 of the fundamental right (Enforcement Procedure Rules) 2009; Sections 42 (1) (B) and 46 (1) and (2) of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria, as amended and inherent jurisdiction of the honourable court as preserved by Section 6 (6) (A) and (B) of the 1999 Construction of Nigeria, as amended.

In the suit No. FHC/AWK/CS/198/2022, the applicant is seeking a declaration that the executive or administrative policy (Northernisation of power policy) of the 1st to 3rd Respondents activated sometime on September 20, 2022 by the 1st to 3rd Respondents, which on the one hand threatened to deny and/or denied or refused to accord him his privilege or advantage to have a sense of belonging to the nation which he and other Southern Nigerian citizens are obliged to continue to benefit from the rotational Presidency of Nigeria headed by a fellow Southern Nigerian citizen Mr.Peter Obi or Asiwaju Bola Tinubu and/or any other fellow Southern Nigerian citizen cleared to contest in the 2023 Presidential election for his/her election as the next President of Nigeria to succeed President Muhammadu Buhari in line with the power rotation convention practiced in Nigeria since 1999 to date between the citizens of Southern and Northern Nigeria, pursuant to the Federal Character of Nigeria State Policy under Section 14(3) of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria as amended and on the other hand allowed or gave clearance to the 5th Respondent (Alhaji Atiku Abubakar), a Northern Nigerian citizen sponsored by the 4th Respondent to also contest in the said Presidential election for his election as the next President of Nigeria to succeed President Buhari contrary to the aforesaid State Policy in order to continue to accord to him the same privilege or advantage to have a sense of belonging to the nation which he and other Northern Nigerian citizens have hitherto benefited from the rotational Presidency of Nigeria headed by a fellow Northern Nigerian citizen, President Buhari elected as President of Nigeria for eight consecutive years from May 29, 2015 to May 29, 2023 is discriminatory against himself and the group or class he represents on grounds of community, ethnic group and place of origin and therefore violate his Fundamental right to freedom from discrimination guaranteed under Section 42 (1) (b) of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria as amended.

He is also seeking a declaration that the executive or administrative policy (Northernisation of power policy) of the 1st to 3rd Respondents activated sometime on September 20, 2022 by the 1st to 3rd Respondents, which, on the one hand threatened to deny and/or denied or refused to accord to him his privilege or advantage to have a sense of belonging to the nation aforesaid and on the other hand allowed or gave clearance to the 5th Respondent (Alhaji Atiku Abubakar), a Northern Nigerian citizen sponsored by the 4th Respondent to also contest in the said Presidential election for his election as the next President of Nigeria to succeed President Buhari contrary to the aforesaid State Policy in order to continue to accord to him the same privilege or advantage to have a sense of belonging to the nation aforesaid is a gross violation of Section 42(1)(b) of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria as amended and therefore unconstitutional, null and void ab initio.

An order setting aside, nullifying and or voiding ab initio any election of the 5th Respondent (Alhaji Atiku Abubakar) as the next President of Nigeria to succeed President Muhammadu Buhari during the 2023 Presidential election for same being discriminatory against him and a gross violation of Section 42(1) (b) of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria as amended.

An Order of Perpetual Injunction restraining the Respondents either by themselves or through their servants, lawful agents, officers, privies or assigns from further acts of discrimination against him i
n the manner of any discriminatory election of the 5th Respondent complained hereof.

The application is supported by a Statement and an Affidavit of 30 Paragraphs and 4 Exhibits deposed to by the applicant himself and also a Written Address containing his arguments.

Ekejiuba in his legal grounds in his Statement in support of the application stated that his Fundamental right to be accorded his privilege or advantage is protected under Section 42 (1)(b) of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria as amended”.

“The Applicant’s Constitutional right to have or be given a sense of belonging to the nation which is his privilege or advantage is donated to him and protected as a Federal Character of Nigeria State Policy under Section 14(3) of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria as amended and defined by Section 318 of the same Constitution”.

He insisted that his Fundamental right to be accorded his privilege or advantage inter alia to have a sense of belonging to the nation is worthy of protection by the Honourable Court pursuant to the spirits and letters of Section 46(1) and (2) of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria as amended”.

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