DISMISS MUTFWANG’S APPEAL”  – GOV. ELECT URGES  SUPREME COURT

DISMISS MUTFWANG'S APPEAL"  - GOV. ELECT URGES  SUPREME COURT

Governor Caleb Mutfwang has raised five issues for determination by the Supreme Court following the judgement of the Court of Appeal that ousted him from office.

In the brief of argument filed on his behalf by Kanu Agabi SAN, the outgoing governor contended that, to all intent and purposes, the judgement of the Court of Appeal on the 17 th of November has occasioned injustice of unquantifiable magnitude to him.

He argued that the PDP did not disobey the order of the Plateau State High Court as it held a repeat congress on the 20th September 2021.

According to him, the reliance on the Bitrus kaze ‘s case to give judgement in favour of the Governor -elect Dr Nentawe Yilwatda, was in error, because INEC which is statutorily responsible for monitoring activities of registered Political Parties tendered report that the PDP conducted Congresses in compliance with the the High court order.

Mutfwang argued that he was not a party to the Suit instituted by Kaze, and as such there was no any Order of Court directed against him and the PDP in respect of the Governorship election conducted in Plateau State on March 18, 2023.

He further argued that from the preponderance of evidence led in the case, the PDP complied with all the court orders adding that the Governor -elect and the APC had admitted that there was a repeat Congress by the PDP during the trial at the tribunal.

Mutfwang pointed out that the Court of Appeal erroneously held that the PDP had no structure to conduct a valid primary election, noting that it was in evidence that the Central Working Committee as appointed by the National Executive Council of the Party conducted the State Congresses on September 25, 2021.

He added that contrary to the decision of the Court of Appeal, apart from the Kaze’s case, no election petition tribunal directed PDP to conduct congresses to enable it participate in any elective office, pointing out that even Justice S.P Gang did not give any order in that respect.

Mutfwang averred that at no point did the Governor-elect and the APC allege that he was not a member of the PDP, let alone warrant reliance on S.177(c) of the 1999 Constitution, adding that the Tribunal/Court has no jurisdiction to entertain the issue of the nomination and sponsorship of candidates at an election.

He claimed that disobedience to Court Order is not part of the provisions of S.177 of the Constitution, adding that invalid nomination and sponsorship of a candidate is not one of the grounds for maintaining an election petition under S.134 of the Electoral Act,2022.

Mutfwang maintained that the issue of  nomination and sponsorship is a domestic affairs of  a political party noting that by the decision of the Supreme Court it is not justiciable.

He cited the Supreme Court decision, in the case of PDP and Anor.V. Sylva and Ors, where it was held that the right to nominate or sponsor a candidate by a political party is a domestic right of the party adding that a Court has no jurisdiction to determine who a political Party should sponsor.

Mutfwang submitted that as much as the Governor -Elect and the APC are not members of the PDP they lack the locus standi to pry into the affairs of the PDP.

He concluded by further submitting that, from the totality of his findings and observations, the Appeal Court’s decision is perverse and therefore the appeal should be allowed. DISMISS MUTFWANG’S APPEAL”  – GOV. ELECT URGES  SUPREME COURT

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