The Court of Appeal in Abuja has fined a former presidential candidate, Ambrose Owuru, N40 million for filing a frivolous petition trying to prevent President-elect Bola Tinubu’s inauguration on May 29.
Owuru was ordered by the Court to pay N10 million to President Muhammadu Buhari, the Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), and Tinubu.
Justice Jamil Tukur, who read the lead judgment of the three-judge panel, found that Owuru committed a serious abuse of the court process by initiating a frivolous petition in order to provoke the respondents.
The Court of Appeal ruled that Owuru’s grievances against the 2019 presidential election were not only unusual but also uncalled for, because the objections had been pursued all the way to the Supreme Court and were dismissed for lack of merit.
Justice Tukur stated that Owuru’s effort to resurrect a case that had died in the Supreme Court since 2019 was intended to put lower courts on a collision course with the Apex Court’s supremacy.
Owuru, a presidential candidate of the now-defunct Hope Democratic Party (HDP) in the 2019 presidential election, has petitioned the Court of Appeal in Abuja to prevent Buhari, Malami, and INEC from formally announcing the President-elect on May 29.
Owuru’s objection to Tinubu or anyone else being sworn in as Buhari’s successor is based on the fact that he is the constitutionally adjudged victor of the 2019 election and has not spent his tenure as required by law.
Among other things, Owuru argued that Buhari has been usurping his presidency since 2019 because the Supreme Court has yet to rule on his petition filed in 2019, in which he contested Buhari’s purported election victory.
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He also requested another order directing and notifying that any form of handover inauguration organized and superintended by Buhari on May 29, 2023 outside the adjudged winner of the 2019 presidential election, the subject of the pending appeal, serves as a “interim place holder” administration pending the hearing and determination of his substantive appeal on constitutional interpretation thereof.