Electoral Act: Supreme Court reserves judgment in suit against Section 84(12)

THE Supreme Court has reserved judgment in a suit filed by President Muhammadu Buhari and Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF) Abubakar Malami, seeking to void Section 84(12) of the Electoral Act, 2022.

A seven-man panel of justices of the apex court led by Justice Mohammed Datijo, which heard the suit on Thursday, said a date for the judgment would be communicated to the parties involved in the suit.

At the proceedings on Thursday, the All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA) and the Nigeria Bar Association (NBA) brought an application seeking to be joined as interested parties.

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APGA later opted-out by withdrawing its application for joinder, which the Supreme Court subsequently struck out.

The NBA, however, insisted that it opted to be joined in the matter because Nigerians do not have representation in the suit.

The apex court had on May 19 admitted an application filed by Rivers State to be joined in the suit.

Buhari and Malami are seeking an order of the Supreme court to strike out Section 84(12) of Electoral Act, claiming it is inconsistent with the Nigeria’s Constitution.

Buhari had, after signing the Electoral Act 2022 into law in February, asked the National Assembly to delete Section 84(12).

The section reads, “No political appointee at any level shall be a voting delegate or be voted for at the convention or congress of any political party for the purpose of the nomination of candidates for any election.”

However, following the refusal of the National Assembly to comply with the request, Buhari and the AGF on April 29 filed a suit marked SC/CV/504/2022 at the Supreme Court.

The President and the AGF, in the suit which has the National Assembly as respondent, asked the Supreme Court to nullify Section 84(12).

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