Wednesday, September 11, 2019
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Buhari qualified to contest presidential election, tribunal rules

Buhari qualified to contest presidential election, tribunal rules
September 11
14:49 2019
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The presidential election petition tribunal has ruled that President Muhammadu Buhari is qualified to contest the presidential election.

Delivering its ruling on Wednesday, the tribunal said the evidence tendered by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) shows that Buhari was qualified to run for president.

The ruling was read out by Muhammed Garba, the head of the appeal court panel.

“The CV contains impressive credentials that enables the second respondent (Buhari) to contest for the presidential election,” Garba held.

“The second respondent has more than secondary school certificate. There is no doubt he is not only qualified but also eminently qualified to contest the election as shown by the evidence presented by the petitioners themselves.”

Atiku Abubakar, presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), had filed a petition at the tribunal challenging the victory of Buhari who contested under the All Progressives Congress (APC).

Among the grounds of his petition is that Buhari did not possess the necessary academic qualification to contest the election.

He also alleged that Buhari submitted false documents to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

But while delivering the ruling, Garba said there was no evidence before the court to show that Buhari lied in his submission to INEC.

He added that nothing shows he joined the army without the secondary educational qualifications.

On whether he studied up to secondary school certificate level, the prerequisite for running for president, the lead judge referenced some documentation from the army which said it was in possession of Buhari’s secondary school results where he passed a number of subjects including English Language.

He also quoted a previous ruling of the court of appeal which defines “school certificate level” or its equivalent as education up to secondary school certificate examination level.

On the purported error in Buhari’s Cambridge certificate, the judge said the second respondent is not the maker of his certificate, and that there is nothing to show that the errors in the names of Buhari as indicated on the certificate from Cambridge and WEAC implied that they do not belong to him.

“I am of the strong view that the petitioners did not prove that the second respondent does not possess the necessary qualification to contest for president,” the lead judge said.

“I am also of the firm view that the petitioners have failed to prove that the second respondent (Buhari) submitted false information.”

The final judgement is being awaited.

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