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Wole Olanipekun challenges competence of suit against Buhari

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Lead Counsel to General Muhammadu Buhari, presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Wole Olanipekun early this week, challenged the competence of the suit against Buhari, challenging his eligibility to participate in the forthcoming presidential election.

Olanipekun who also challenged the order granted by the court for substituted service on Buhari, during the proceedings, informed the court that in view of the addendum published by the plaintiff in the Newspapers in compliance with the orders, that time had only started counting for the defence team last Friday and thus, they are within time to file their processes before the court.

“We are here in protest. We only came to court for two reasons. Our client, Gen. Muhammadu Buhari, has the utmost respect for this court and we as officers in the temple of Justice, have a duty to come here and offer assistance to this court. We are filing our processes at the court’s registry and we are challenging the legality of this court’s orders as well as the competence of the suit. The case is not even ripe for mention as it is” said Chief Olanipekun.

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The suit, which challenges the eligibility of Gen. Muhammadu Buhari (rtd.), to participate in the forthcoming presidential election, was filed by Max Ozoaka, on the grounds that Gen. Buhari failed to comply with the Constitutional requirements guiding candidates’ eligibility to contest for the Presidential election. The plaintiff is thus seeking for the disqualification of the APC candidate from the 2015 General elections.

The debates surrounding the Buhari’s certificate and the alleged non-inclusion of this document in the forms submitted to the electoral body, INEC, gave rise to a series of cases seeking his disqualification from the forthcoming Presidential election. A second suit, filed by Chukwunweike Okafor on February 5th, 2015 also seeks Buhari’s disqualification from the General elections. This case is also before the Hon. Justice Adeniyi Ademola of the Federal High Court in Abuja and was heard on Monday February 9th. Both cases have been adjourned to Monday, 23rd February, for hearing of applications for joinders filed by other interested parties seeking to be joined in both cases.

Prominent Senior Advocates of Nigeria found in court for the matter include, Chief Wole Olanipekun, Akin Olujinmi, Lateef Fagbemi, Emeka Ngige, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, James Ocholi, Funke Aboyade, Femi Falana, all of which represented Buhari while Ade Okeaya Ineh, Godwin Obla and Ken Njamanze and others, appeared for the plaintiff, Max Ozoaka.