This is coming amid calls by the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP for Zamfara state governor, Bello Matawalle to quit his seat following his defection to APC.
According to Sani, PDP’s stance is clearly a treasonable felony, and it is also the same thing as what Nnamdi Kanu and Sunday Igboho are doing with their respective groups.
He added that it is funny that the same PDP that celebrated the defection of Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue state and Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo state from the APC are reacting bitterly in this case.
His words, “It is extremely laughable that the PDP that celebrated the defection of Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue state and Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo state from the APC to the PDP with such elaborate fanfare would muster the effrontery to attempt to remove Governor Bello Matawalle from office for defecting to the APC. Once again, it is simply ridiculous.”
“We are also wondering why the PDP which benefitted from the defection of Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto State and Godwin Obaseki of Edo State from APC to PDP, did not see anything wrong with such defections.”
“A similar case as this had come up in the case of EJURA V. IDRIS & ORS (2006) LPELR-5827, and the Court of Appeal held that a governor once elected can only be removed by an election petition tribunal and not a regular court such as the Federal High Court.”
“The court also held that the provisions of the Electoral Act can only operate to remove an elected governor if the provisions are invoked before an election tribunal. The Court of Appeal therefore held that the trial judge was right to have declined jurisdiction to remove Governor Idris by an Originating Summons filed before the Federal High Court (as in this case), since the governor was absolutely protected by immunity in section 308 of the Constitution.”
“It should also be noted that the Supreme Court decision that enthroned Governor Matawalle into office was a pre-election matter between two factions of the APC (not PDP), and that the time to have challenged Governor Matawalle expired over two years ago.”
“More significantly, section 180 of the constitution provides the only situations in which a validly elected governor can cease to hold office; not by removal through an Originating Summons filed before a Federal High Court.”
“The entire suit against Matawalle falls within the realm of a political question which is not justiciable or actionable in a court of law ‘That until the Constitution and the Electoral Act specifically debar a governor from defecting, no governor who has defected can thereby lose his seat, or have his seat occupied by his deputy governor. Such postulations are legally untenable.’
“No constitutional or Electoral Act provisions state that governor must continue to remain in office under the same party on whose platform he contested and won an election, so as to sustain his governorship position. The days ahead will definitely show some interesting legal fireworks.”
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