Five residents of the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, Abuja, have petitioned the Abuja Division of the Federal High Court for an order to stop the ceremony barely 17 days before Asiwaju Bola Tinubu is supposed to be sworn in as president.
In the lawsuit with the file number FHC/ABJ/CS/578/2023, the plaintiffs asked for a court order barring Justice Olukayode Ariwoola, the Chief Justice of Nigeria, from swearing in any of the candidates for the February 25 presidential election as President or Vice-President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria until such time as it has been definitively determined by the court or in accordance with the Constitution that such candidate is not eligible to serve in either office.
They further want a declaration that, “the plaintiffs and other FCT residents have a legal interest and constitutional rights to be heard on the question of whether a President-elect must secure at least 25% of votes cast, on the first ballot, in the FCT, Abuja.”
“A declaration that no state of the country is at the same time the FCT for any propose whatsoever, including, in particular, under section 134 (2) (b) of the Constitution.
“A declaration that no candidate in the February 25 presidential election in the country may validly be declared elected President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria without that candidate obtaining at least 25% of the votes cast in the FCT, Abuja.
“A declaration that no candidate in the February 25 presidential election may validly be sworn in as President and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, without such candidate having obtained 25% of the votes case in FCT, Abuja.
“A declaration that following the February 25 presidential election and until a successor is determined in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution and sworn in, the term of office of his Excellency, Muhammadu Buhari, GCON, as President and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of the Federal Republic of Nigeria subsists and endures in accordance with the provisions of section 135 (1) (a) of the Constitution”.
As well as, “An order setting aside or suspending any declaration and/or issuance of a Certificate of a Return to any candidate in the February 25 presidential election in the country as having been elected, save and except it is judicially determined with finality that such candidate fulfilled the conditions stated in section 134(2) (b) of the Constitution.
The lawsuit’s five plaintiffs—Anyaegbunam Okoye, David Adzer, Jeffery Ucheh, Osang Paul, and Chibuike Nwachukwu—identified themselves as “registered voters of the FCT, Abuja.
As the first and second defendants in the case, respectively, were the CJN and the Attorney-General of the Federation.