Hearing begins on fate of Buhari’s presidency Feb. 8

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A federal high court in Abuja has shifted hearing in a fresh court action instituted against President Muhammadu Buhari’s 2019 presidential election to February  next year.

The fresh suit filed by a former presidential candidate, Chief Ambrose Albert Owuru of Hope Democratic Party (HDP) seeking order of court to declare the presidential seat vacant was put off due to lack of judicial time.

Though the suit was slated for December 7 for hearing, Justice Inyang Eden Ekwo adjourned it to a new date due to heavy work load of the court.

The judge while shifting the case to next year for adjudication ordered that fresh hearing notice be issued and served on parties in the matter before the hearing date.

Apart from President Buhari, other defendants in the suit with reference number FHC/ABJ/CS/480/2021 are the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) as first, second and third defendants respectfully. 

Owuru dragged President Buhari before the court praying it for an order to declare the presidency vacant on the ground that Buhari was not the winner of the February 16, 2019 presidential election. 

The British trained constitutional lawyer and called to the Nigerian Bar in 1982, is asking the court to declare Buhari as illegally occupying the presidential seat. 

The plaintiff, who stood for the 2019 presidential election on the platform of the Hope Democratic Party, wants the court to declare him as the authentic winner of the poll and another order of the court directing his immediate inauguration to take over from Buhari. 

In the suit he instituted on June 16. 2021, Owuru claimed that he won the February 16. 2019 presidential election and that his suit against Buhari at the Supreme Court was inconclusive due to errors on adjourned date. 

He sought a declaration by the federal high court that he is entitled to serve out a tenure of 4 years after his formal inauguration. 

Among other reliefs , the ex presidential candidate wants Buhari removed from office with immediate effect and also to b be ordered to refund all salaries allowances and emoluments he has so far collected while being unlawfully in office as president. 

Owuru pleaded with the court to give order that salaries, allowances and emoluments be paid to him from May 29, 2019 when he ought to have been sworn in till date.

The plaintiff further applied for an order of perpetual injunction restraining Buhari, Attorney General of the Federation and Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) from further organising and conducting any presidential election in 2023 so as to enable him complete his 4 –year- term when inaugurated.

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