The Supreme Court of Nigeria has re-affirmed the judgment passed by the Court of Appeal, which declared the purported de-registration of the Youth Party ‘illegal, null and void’.
The apex court in its unanimous judgment dismissed the appeal filed by the Independent National Electoral Commission(INEC) and confirmed that the Youth Party is a registered political party, eligible to participate in 2023 elections at all levels.
The Supreme court Justices led by Justice Uwani Aji, upheld the decision of the Federal High Court Abuja which was delivered by Justice I.E. Ekwo that declared the purported de-registration of the party illegal, null and void, and, that of the Court of Appeal which also “found the action of the appellant very reprehensive.”
The Youth Party’s had through its lawyers, Chief Bolaji Ayorinde, SAN, leading, Chukwudi Adiukwu, and Wale Irokosu, urged the apex court to dismiss the appeal against it and uphold the judgment of the lower courts.
The judjment at the lower courts had been based on the INEC persistent disregard for the law and judicial decisions in failing to register the party within the time stipulated in the law and thereby preventing it from participating in elections illegally.
INEC had failed to register the party after it got a judgment against it in FHC/ABJ/CS/221/2017 between Chukwudi Adiukwu & Ors V. INEC delivered on October 18th, 2017, until August 14th, 2018, less than five days to the commencement of party primaries in 2018.
Justice I.E. Ekwo had held “The defendant must understand that the constitution is not an author of confusion. I condemn the action of the defendant as a wrong exercise of might. Therefore, the de-registration of the plaintiff during the pendency of this action by the defendant is illegal, null and void, and liable to be set aside. Consequently, I hereby make an order setting aside the de-registration of the Plaintiff.”