Atiku may be disqualified as PDP flagbearer, this is why

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On Tuesday, May 31, a constitutional lawyer, Johnmary Jideobi, challenged former Vice President Atiku Abubakar's ability to run for President in 2023 at the Federal High Court in Abuja.

Jideobi, who named the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) as the second and third defendants in the FHC/ABJ/CS/751/2022 action, said that Atiku is not constitutionally qualified to run for president in 2023.

Atiku Abubakar
Atiku Abubakar

The Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, was named as a fourth defendant by the lawyer. He based his case on two legal questions about the PDP's flagbearer's citizenship that were brought to the court.

The lawyer asked the court to determine “Whether, by the combined provisions of sections 1(1) & (2), 25 and 131(a) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended), only a Nigeria citizen by birth can contest for the office of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria?

Also, he called on the court to determine “Whether by the combined interpretation of sections 1(1) & (2), 25(1) & (2) and 131(a) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended), and giving the circumstances surrounding the birth of the 1st Defendant, he can be cleared by the 2nd and 3rd Defendants to contest for the office of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria?”.

This could be a precedent if it turns out that the PDP candidate is disqualified by the court. Atiku Abubakar, a former Vice President, secured the opposition party's nomination beating Nyesom Wike and others in the process.

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