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Plateau: Justice Tukur Panel Went Out Of The Law Books To Nullify Elections Of PDP Lawmakers – Beni Lar



Beni Lar tribunal

Rep Beni Lar, PDP, Langtang North/South Federal Constituency, Plateau State has vowed to upturn the decision of the National Assembly Election Petition Tribunal which overturned her election on the allegation that the PDP did not have a recognized structure to have nominated her for the election.

Responding to the development in an interview, Ms Lar said the tribunal went out of the recognized law that forbids non-participants in a primary to interfere in the nomination of a candidate. Even more, Lar, said that the issue taken to the tribunal was a pre-election matter which was outside the remit of the Justice Mohammed Tukur-led tribunal.

Lar further disclosed that the decisions of the Justice Tukur-led panel were out of sync with the second tribunal sitting in the same venue which has refused to meddle into the nomination of candidates of the PDP.

The Justice Tukur tribunal has so far nullified the election of 15 persons on the Plateau elected on the platform of the PDP starting from Senator Napoleon Bali.

Asserting that the PDP candidates were validly nominated, she said:

“As you know, the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal, PEPT in the case of APM vs Shettima said that the issue of nomination or sponsorship by any party can only be brought before the court according to the 2023 Electoral Act by a person who is an aspirant or who contested with the candidate. Any other political party is disqualified from doing so. So on what basis is APC or any other party, LP, APC suing us on a pre-election matter?

“To the understanding of every lay man who knows that the provision of the Electoral Act that the tribunal can only restrict itself to post-election matters. All pre-election matters including nomination and sponsorship are pre-election matters and that they are not to be handled by the tribunal, they are to be handled months before now.

“We won our elections with huge gaps hands down and so we don’t see how a pre-election matter that does not even exist is used to nullify the election of about 15 people now because every day that panel reads judgments all against PDP. Something must be wrong somewhere. This is going out of the law. It is very worrisome and I worry for this country.”

Describing the judgment of the Tukur led tribunal as a political judgment, Beni Lar said:

“It is politics because it seems to be more of a political judgment. This is definitely a political judgment not a legal judgement because I am a lawyer. No lawyer will accept such judgment that a pre-election matter will come out in a post-election matter and be used to disqualify candidates.”

“The judiciary is a very sacred institution, it is the sanctity of this nation and the sanity of Nigeria depends on the Nigerian judiciary. If the Nigerian judiciary doesn’t get it right, sorry, this country is heading nowhere.

“The court made it very clear that the internal affairs of a party remain the internal affairs of that party. It is only those who contested on that platform that can contest the nomination. Anyone outside that platform cannot begin to talk about sponsorship by that party. It is against the law. So, we don’t understand, how or the nature of this judgment and what the legal reasoning behind it but definitely this is a great miscarriage of justice and it is a thing of concern for Nigerians,” Beni Lar said in stating her opposition to the decision of the tribunal.

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