The presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Peter Obi, has asked a Federal High Court in Abuja to dismiss the suit by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) seeking his disqualification for nominating Doyin Okupe as his running mate. Recall that the PDP had dragged Peter Obi to court over his decision to replace Okupe with Yusuf Datti Baba-Ahmed as his running mate for the 2023 presidential election.
The PDP had asked the court to disqualify the labour party presidential candidate Mr Peter Obi for replacing Okupe and also prevent the All Progressive Congress (APC) Presidential candidate, Bola Tinubu, for replacing Kabiru Masari as his running mate.
Responding to the originating motion, counsel to Mr Peter Obi and Doyin Okupe, Alex Ejesieme (SAN), prayed the court to dismiss the suit of the PDP on four grounds. Alex Ejesieme argued that the PDP’s suit is speculative, conjectural, and devoid of hard facts.
According to his words; “The plaintiff has not disclosed any reasonable cause of action to activate the jurisdiction of this court. The subject matter of the plaintiff’s suit is not situated within the jurisdictional confines of the Federal High Court. The plaintiff’s suit is a gross abuse of court process,” he stated.
The PDP had earlier stated that the term ‘placeholder’ is unknown to the Electoral Act, accusing Doyin Okupe of publicly admitting that he was a mere placeholder. Responding to the claim, Alex Ejesieme said; “Assuming it is established that Tinubu and Peter Obi indeed make media publications indicating the alleged placeholder status of Kabiru Madari and Doyin Okupe, does that in its own right and does not constitute a wrongdoing sufficient to activate the cause of action on the plaintiff?
“Is the conduct of the elections for which the defendants are to contest in, bound by the statements made in the media? Obviously not, my lord,” Alex Ejesieme legal counsel to Mr Peter Obi stated.
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