A chieftain of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) from Adamawa State Dr Umar Ardo has sued President Goodluck Jonathan, challenging the president’s recent endorsement by the party as its sole presidential candidate.
Ardo, who was an aspirant in the PDP’s recently conducted governorship primary in Adamawa State has in a motion filed before the Court of Appeal in Abuja, prayed the court to declare that President Jonathan is not qualified to contest next year’s presidential elections having been sworn in twice as president.
The PDP chieftain, whose motion was dated September 23, said should President Jonathan be allowed to contest, that would go contrary to the relevant provisions of the Nigeria 1999 Constitution, as amended, which provides that a person shall not spend more than eight years as president.
Joined in the suit as second and third respondents are the PDP and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
In the motion, Ardo said as someone who wants to vie for the presidential seat on the PDP platform, the recent endorsement of President Jonathan by the party is a breach on his constitutional right, hence he prayed the Appeal Court to set aside an earlier judgement by an Abuja high court which ruled on March 1, 2013 that Jonathan was eligible to re-contest.
He said: “my desire is mainly built on my conviction that the 1st Respondent would not be eligible to contest the said 2015 presidential election which would have cleared the way for a free, fair and level playing ground contest for the party primaries.
“I know for a fact that the 2nd Respondent’s adoption of the 1st Respondent as its sole candidate for the 2015 presidential election was premised on the said subsisting judgement of the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory that pronounced that the 1st Respondent was eligible to contest another term of four years in office. That my right to pursue my presidential ambition on the platform of the 2nd Respondent has been prejudicially affected.”