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PEOPLES DEMOCRATIC PARTY & ANOR v. HON. DR PATRICK O. ASADU & ORS

(2016) LPELR-41007(SC)

In The Supreme Court of Nigeria

On Friday, the 7th day of October, 2016

SC.735/2015(R)


Before Their Lordships

OLABODE RHODES-VIVOUR Justice of The Supreme Court of Nigeria

MUSA DATIJJO MUHAMMAD Justice of The Supreme Court of Nigeria

CLARA BATA OGUNBIYI Justice of The Supreme Court of Nigeria

CHIMA CENTUS NWEZE Justice of The Supreme Court of Nigeria

AMIRU SANUSI Justice of The Supreme Court of Nigeria


Between

1. PEOPLES DEMOCRATIC PARTY (PDP)
2. THE NATIONAL WORKING COMMITTEE OF PEOPLES DEMOCRATIC PARTY - Appellant(s)

AND

1. HON. DR PATRICK O. ASADU
2. ENGR. NEWTON I. UGWUEGEDE
3. INDEPENDENT NATIONAL ELECTORAL COMMISSION (INEC) - Respondent(s)


Other Citations

; ;


Summary

INTRODUCTION:

FACTS:

ISSUES:
The appellants/applicants' motion on Notice filed on 19 April 2016 is for the following six reliefs.
1. An Order extending time for the Appellants to seek leave of the Supreme Court to appeal on grounds of mixed law and facts against the judgment of the Court of Appeal Abuja delivered on 1st July, 2015.
2. An Order granting leave to the Appellants to appeal on grounds of mixed law and facts against the said judgment of the Court of Appeal delivered on 1st July 2015.
3. An Order extending time for the Appellants to appeal on grounds of mixed law and facts against the said judgment of the Court of Appeal delivered on 1st July 2015.
4. An Order deeming the Notice of Appeal dated 15th September 2015 and filed on 16th September, 2015 as it concerns Grounds 2 - 9, as properly filed and served.
5. Leave to adduced additional documentary evidence which were not tendered at the trial Court and the Court of Appeal to wit:
The Extract of the Minute of Meeting of the National Working Committee (NWC) of the People Democratic Party held on Wednesday, 17th December, 2014 at

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which the report of the Electoral Panel and Appeal Committee on the Primaries in Enugu State were considered and decision taken to approve the nomination of Engr. Ikechukwu Ugwuegede as the Official candidate of the PDP for the Igbo-Eze South/Nsukka Federal Constituency, Enugu State.
6. Leave to raise/argue an issue of jurisdiction not argued in the Courts below, which said issue of jurisdiction is that the 1st Respondent is not competent to maintain/institute this suit thereby robbing the Honourable Court for the jurisdiction to entertain same on the grounds that:
(a) Section 87 (9) of the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended) merely confers locus standi on an aggrieved aspirant to approach a Court of Law for redress in respect of issues arising from the nomination/primary election exercise of his or her Political Party.
Section 87 (9) does not derogate from the prerogative right and final authority of a Political Party on the issue of its choice of candidates for elective officers not even in the face of breaching its rules and regulations.
(b) By the doctrine of estoppel, the 1st Respondent having unequivocally agreed to be bound by and not


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to challenge any decision of the National Working Committee (2nd appellant) is estoppel from instituting this suit.

In support of the motion on Notice is a 23 paragraph affidavit deposed to by Chinedu Ezeh, Esq., a legal practitioner in chambers of learned counsel for the appellant/applicants'. Annexed to the Motion are documents marked exhibits A, B,
C, D, E.

The 1st Respondent filed a 9 paragraph counter affidavit deposed to by Victor Emenike, Esq, a legal practitioner in chambers of learned counsel for the 1st Respondent. Annexed thereto is a Ruling of this Court rendered on 11th April, 2016. No counter affidavits were filed for the 2nd and 3rd Respondents.

At the hearing of the application on 29th September 2016 learned counsel for the appellants/applicants, Mr. P.I.N. Ikweto SAN., adopted his written address,
DECISION/HELD:


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