Reprieve may have come the way of the ruling All Progressives Congress(APC) as the Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja sets aside a decision of the Federal High Court which affirmed the exclusion of the APC candidates in Zamfara State from the forthcoming general elections.
The lower court presided by Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu had on January 25 ruled that INEC was right to have excluded the APC from the elections.
The court said the primaries that produced the candidates was flawed.
However in a ruling on Thursday, a three-member panel led by Justice Abdul Aboki described the lower court ruling as an “aberration”.
The appeal agreed with lawyers representing the APC who argued that the motion brought before the lower court was filed outside of the allowed time.
According to the judges, the application ought to have been brought 14 days from the date when the alleged electoral infraction occurred.
The Appeal Court held that the filing of the matter, after 14 days at the lower court, made it impossible for the lower court to have jurisdiction on the matter.
“The suit is hereby struck out for lack of want of jurisdiction on the part of the lower court. The judgement of the lower court is hereby set aside,” the court ruled.
You may recall that exclusion of APC Zamfara and in Rivers State have been subject of litigation making INEC to oppose their inclusion in the ballot, and other counter allegation among political stakeholders in the state and across the nation.