Youth Party has asserted that the party remains a legally registered and fully operational political party in Nigeria as it is not affected by the ruling of the Supreme Court on deregistration of about 74 political parties.
The Youth Party, in a statement by its Chairman, Tomiwa Aladekomo, explained that, “the judgement by the Supreme Court was against the National Unity Party (NUP) and does not affect the Youth Party. We remain a legally registered political party.”
According to Aladekomo, “There were three cases against the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC). The NUP case was decided yesterday and there is also a second case that involves 22 parties, which is yet to be decided. The third case is with the Youth Party.
“The most recent judgement in this case filed against INEC was a victory for the Youth Party. The judgement was delivered by Justice Ekwo at the Federal High Court, Abuja on 15th October, 2020, who directed INEC to allow the Youth Party to participate in all elections until 2023. The judgement has not been set aside and has not been stayed. INEC is required by law to obey the said judgment until it is set aside by a court of law.”
He continued: “It is important to note that Youth Party’s legal challenge rests on the basis of INEC’s initial refusal to register the party and delayed response to court orders. The Youth Party began the process to register our party in November 2016, a process that should ordinarily take a month or two at most.
“After INEC refused to register the party under its chosen name, the Party went to court to challenge INEC’s position. We won this case on the 18th October, 2017. Despite the Court’s judgement, INEC did not formally register Youth Party until August 2018, less than two weeks before primaries for the 2019 elections were to begin. This delay of course made competing effectively in the elections near impossible, as it left us almost no time to mobilize.”
He further noted: ”To Youth Party’s supporters and the Nigerian people at large, we say that we will continue to fight. We remain a legally registered political party despite INEC’s actions. We believe in the merits of our case and believe we will prevail and compete in the 2023 elections and many elections before then, starting with the upcoming Lagos State Local Government elections.
“We have published our guidelines for our primaries, have strong candidates ready to contest on our platform and made our legal position clear to LASIEC, which governs these elections and INEC as well. We challenge them to obey the courts and allow us to participate.
“Any form of exclusion from the Lagos Polls by the Lagos State Independent Electoral Commission (LASIEC) would render the electoral process null and void.
“We urge Nigerians join us in this fight. Visit youthpartyng.com and register to join us. We can shape a truly bright future for Nigeria if we all work together”.