2023 Presidential Election: President Tinubu’s Bid Faces Supreme Court Showdown
In a recent development, President Bola Ahmed Tinubu is confronting a legal battle before the Supreme Court, accused of unlawfully inaugurating himself as President amid ongoing legal proceedings challenging the conduct of the 2023 presidential election. Chief Albert Ambrose Owuru, a presidential candidate in the 2019 general election, has invoked the doctrine of Lis Pendens, urging the Apex Court to nullify Tinubu’s inauguration.
Owuru, a Constitutional lawyer, argues that the election that declared Tinubu as President is invalid and constitutes illegal self-help due to his unresolved legal dispute against Tinubu at the Supreme Court. The pending suit (No. SC/667/2023) involves Chief A.A. Owuru and the Hope Democratic Party as Appellants, with Respondents including former President Muhammadu Buhari, the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF), INEC, and Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
Owuru contends that Tinubu’s acceptance as President by INEC violates the doctrine of Lis Pendens, as Tinubu is a party in the ongoing Supreme Court case. He insists that Tinubu should not have presented himself for inauguration while the lawsuit is pending.
Furthermore, Owuru, who contested the 2019 presidential election under the Hope Democratic Party, highlights a suit seeking to declare him the constitutional winner of the 2019 election. Tinubu voluntarily joined this case on May 18, 2023. In a recent motion, Owuru is also seeking an order restraining Tinubu from operating the Federation Account until the constitutional questions against the 2023 election are resolved.
In a statement issued in Abuja, Owuru argues that Tinubu’s claim to the presidency is affected by Lis Pendens, asserting that Tinubu’s inauguration is an act of self-help that violates the law and the doctrine of Lis Pendens. The statement emphasizes the need to await the outcome of the existing legal proceedings on the usurpation of constitutional mandate before determining the authenticity of the 2023 presidential election.
Owuru urges Nigerians to be patient for the resolution of these outstanding issues to determine the legitimate President of Nigeria. Despite previous legal setbacks, including the dismissal of Owuru’s initial suit by the Federal High Court, he remains steadfast in challenging the purported declaration of Buhari as the election winner in 2019.