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INEC, PDP, Whip dragged to Court over election

Maiture said that the party substituted his name to that of Waziri, 1st respondent after he had changed from ANPP to PDP within 45 days…

Maiture said that the party substituted his name to that of Waziri, 1st respondent after he had changed from ANPP to PDP within 45 days to the election.

He asked the appellate court to declare that he was the lawful candidate for the constituency having been returned unopposed and that his substitution was illegal and a contravention of the Electoral Act 2006.

Maiture also asked the court for an order compelling INEC to issue him with the certificate of return as the duly elected member of the Federal House of Representatives representing Tambuwal/Kebbe federal constituency of Sokoto state in the 2007 election. The Court, he said should determine whether his action to claim his mandate was defeated by reason of the provisions of Section 2 of the Public Officers Protection Act because the trial court dismissed the suit on the ground that it was statute bar.

He averred that having not been informed formally by either PDP or INEC as to the reason he was removed as candidate in line with section 34 of the electoral Act 2006, any change of decision with respect to his constituency should be declared illegal. The respondent said that INEC can only be said to be acting as a public officer subject to protection under the Act if the conduct complained about forms part of his duty.

He asked the court to hold that the Public Protection Act did not apply in his case as the substitution was done illegally.

“Since Section 34 of the electoral Act 2006 forbids the 2nd and 3rd respondent (PDP and INEC) from substituting/changing a candidate less than 60 days to an election like in the instant case, the substitution of the appellant by the 2nd and 3rd respondents as the candidate for the House of Representatives for the Tambuwal/Kebbe Federal constituency, the 3rd respondent cannot hide under the Public  Officers Protection Act to defeat the claim of the appellant”, he said adding that the 1st respondent decamped from DPP to ANPP and back to PDP after the primaries in 2006 only for his mandate to be hijacked for him by PDP and INEC.