By Abimbola Ogunnaike
The Presidential Election Petitions Court sitting in Abuja and being presided over by Justice Haruna Haruna Tsammani, on Wednesday, 6 September, 2023, dismissed the petition of the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, alleging dual citizenship and drug conviction against President Bola Tinubu.
In a judgment on the objections of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and Tinubu grounds that the issues bordering on his non-qualification to contest the February 25 presidential election, Justice Moses Ugo held that the grounds were new issues.
The five-man panel upheld the objections of the APC and Tinubu that the Atiku and PDP could not smuggle new issues not pleaded in their petition on the grounds of non-qualification.
Recall that Atiku had in his reply to Tinubu challenging submitted that he was constitutionally disabled from contesting for the office of President of Federal Republic of Nigeria because he forfeited the sum of $460,000 in a compromise agreement for narcotics related crime (proceeds of crime) in the United States District Court, Northern District of Illinois Eastern Division.
Atiku, a former Vice President of Nigeria, also claimed that Tinubu failed to disclose in his form EC9 that he holds dual citizenship of Nigeria and Guinea, having voluntarily acquired the citizenship of the Republic of Guinea.