related Tribunal rules Buhari is qualified to contest for president

Tribunal rules Buhari is qualified to contest for president

The Presidential Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Abuja is currently delivering its judgement on the petition filed by Atiku Abukabar of the PDP against Muhammadu Buhari of the APC.

The tribunal has ruled that Buhari is qualified to contest the 2019 presidential election.

The PDP is asking the tribunal to determine:

Whether Buhari was at the time of the election qualified to contest or not

Whether Buhari submitted false evidence to INEC with regards to his academic qualifications

Whether Buhari got highest votes and was duly elected

Whether the election was invalidated by corruption.

Whether the election was invalidated by non-compliance of the electoral act.

Lead judge, mohammed Garba, while giving ruling on the PDP's argument said that Buhari had claimed in his submission that he has the requisite educational qualifications to run for president.

The lead judge adds that there is no evidence before the court to prove that Buhari, the second respondent, lied in his form or that he joined the army without the secondary educational qualifications in question.

Garba also said that the 1999 constitution only requires a presidential candidate to be educated to the level of obtaining a school certificate.

He quoted a previous ruling of the court of appeal which defines 'school certificate level' or its equivalent as education up to secondary school certificate examination level.

The judge said that the qualifications Buhari obtained from the military are higher than the secondary school certificate being contended.

Garba added that the army had dismissed the claims put forward by the PDP regarding Buhari's certificate and that the petitioners failed to further establish credible grounds on the claim.

The court held that the evidence tendered by PDP regarding Buhari’s qualifications were not to be relied upon, since the PDP was not the original makers of the documents.

Garba continues: “I am of the strong view that the petitioner did not prove that the second respondent does not possess the necessary qualification to contest for president. I am also of the firm view that the petitioners have failed to prove that the second respondent (Buhari) submitted false information.”

The lead judge says the second respondent (Buhari) is not the maker of his certificate, and that there is nothing to show that the errors in his names as indicated on the certificate from Cambridge and WEAC implied that they do not belong to him.

“The second respondent has more than secondary school certificate. There is no doubt he is not only qualified but also eminently qualified to contest the election as shown by the evidence presented by the petitioners themselves,” the chairman of the Court of Appeal panel said.

Details later:

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