By Golok Nanmwa, Jos
Group operating under the auspices of “The Forum of Former Youth Leaders” in Plateau State on Monday asserted that the People of the state based on the outcome of the 2023 General election vote massively for the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) and their Candidates insisting that the choice of the citizens should be respected.
Chairman of the group Mr Yakubu Ibrahim Itse, who addressed Journalists in Jos the Plateau state capital said ” We the Veterans and well meaning Plateau People wish to express our worries and concerns on the unprofessional and contradictory judgements delivered by Justice MB Tukur in opposition to proceeding judgement of the Presidential tribunal of corresponding jurisdiction in respect of Plateau state Senatorial and House of Representatives elections against the weight of evidence and the rule of law.
In their words “You may recall that the tribunal began delivering it’s judgements over the past three weeks,which we however witnessed with utter shock abs dismay, the conflicting judgements for the representatives of the state and the National assembly.”
In line with the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria ,the fabricated and extensively speculated question of structure, upon which the aggrieved petitioners anchored their optimisms in their suit against the PDP, was unfaltering thrown out and effortlessly quashed by the earlier judgement pronounced by Justice William Rotimi and his other two justices at a tribunal of same jurisdiction.
They added that ” Having confirmed the validity of PDP’s structure as evidenced by the Plethora of earlier court judgements that the PDP had compiled with the judgements of Justice Gang and Kinda and in line with the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (As amended ) ,electoral act 2022 as well as chapter 8 of the PDP constitution ,the tribunal in the cases between Senator Simon Mwadkwon Vs others, Hon. Musa Agah Vs others ,the professional judgement of the tribunal is resounding and commendable .
According to the group “In a similar professional ruling in the case if Hon Isaac Kwallu Vs others ,the tribunal maintained similar cultured stance which practically have laid to rest the question of whether or not PDP has a structure, the tribunal in these cases unequivocally rules that nomination and sponsorship of candidates for elections, was the singular duty of the party and that the procedure of contesting such nominations was limited to only members of that party which must br through a Federal High Court.”
“We the Veterans maintain that the above decision is correct and in compliance with the provisions of our relevant laws ,also it was the considered opinion a d conviction of the tribunal that the issue on nomination of candidates is a pre-election matter that should not form part of an election petition, with that valid and reverberating judgement the matter if structure and nomination if candidates was eternally put to rest”
“However in the subsequent contradictory judgement delivered by Justice MB Tukur ,on the 11th of September 2023, the respective victories of Hon Peter Gyendeng of Barkin Ladi/Riyom Federal Constituency, Hon Musa Bagos of Jos South/Jos East Federal Constituency and Hon Beni Lar of Langtang South and North Federal Constituency as well of the election of Senator Napoleon Bali of Plateau South Senatorial District were unjustly overturned on same grounds as the first judgements .”
“We assert that for Justice Tukur to contradict his learned colleagues who has earlier upheld the election of Senator Simon Mwadkwon, Hon. Musa Agah and Hon. Issac Kwallu on the same grounds is tantamount to sowing a seed of discord and chaos, while we respect the sanctity of the Nigerian judiciary, we nevertheless are perturbed about this recent judicial debacle that is capable of setting the state in a needless strife, this development is awfully troubling to us” they alleged.
The Group further alleged that the learned Justice MB Tukur erred in law to have unjustifiably interloped into an area external to the core interest and powers of his court ( Tribunal ), hence his judgement should be revisited.
They also alleged that “The legal technicalities and intelligence should not be used to nullify the victory of Plateau dully elected leaders , we say the election of PDP members who have been dully returned and sworn in which are still pending in the tribunal should be upheld”.
“We say that the PDP cases that have been upturned by Justice MB Tukur at the tribunal be restored back to the dully elected members if the PDP at the Appeal level”.
The group also called on that the National Judiciary Council and organs if the law as well as anti-graft agencies to investigate the matter for any external or pecuniary motivations that have probably informed the decision of the said justices .
“We insist that tribunal judges and lawyers are made to attend retreats to further sharpen , strengthen and improve their understanding of the law before the commencement of any tribunal case”.
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