The Court of Appeal has granted an application by the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) to join an interested party in an appeal against the judgment of an Umuahia High Court, which nullified and struck down section 84(12) of the Act.
Justice Evelyn Anyadike of the Umuahia Federal High Court had on March 18, 2022, declared “invalid and unconstitutional “section 84(12) of the amended Electoral Act 2022.
Justice Evelyn Anyadike in a judgment ordered the Attorney General of the Federation to delete the said section from the amended Electoral Act.
Section 84(12) of the Electoral Act provides that, “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”.
An enrollment order of the Court of Appeal, Owerri Division, which granted leave to the PDP to appeal the judgement was sighted by judiciary correspondents on Sunday.
The enrollment order was signed by the Presiding Justice of the court, Rita Pemu. Counsel to PDP, D.C Denwigwe SAN moved the application for leave.
The appeal marked CA/OW/87/2022 has Chief Nduka Edede and the Attorney General of the Federation AGF as the 1st and 2nd respondents respectively.
The enrollment order to read in part “Upon reading the application herein filed on 23-3-2022 with an affidavit in support sworn to by John Eronini, on the same date and after hearing D.C Denwigwe SAN, for the applicant and Chief Emeka Ozoani SAN, for the 1st respondent, the order is hereby granted as follows;
“Leave is hereby granted to the applicant (PDP) to appeal as a person interested in this appeal CA/OW/87/2022.
“Due to the exigencies of this appeal and its constitutional colourization, there is a need to hear this matter expeditiously.
“Accordingly, the Appellant is hereby given up to Tuesday 12th of April, 2022 to file its Notice of Appeal and the parties are to file their respective briefs of arguments within three days from the date of service of the notice and record of Appeal on the respondents.
“There shall be a further three days given to the appellant to file a reply.
“Parties should desist from taking any step to frustrate the hearing of the appeal.
“The matter is adjourned to the 4th of May, 2022, for the hearing of the appeal.
“Fresh hearing notice to be issued on the 2nd to the 12th respondents”.
Recall that the National Assembly which enacted the contentious section 84(12) had lodged an appeal at the Court of Appeal in Owerri against the Umuahia court judgment, which had ordered the AGF to delete Section 84(12) of the amended Electoral Act 2022.