An Abuja-based lawyer, Festus Onifade, has sued President Muhammad Buhari before a Federal High Court in Abuja over an alleged gross breach of Nigeria’s constitution in relation to recent Federal Character Commission (FCC) appointments.
Mr Buhari was sued alongside the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, FCC, Mueeba Dankaka and Mohammed Tukur.
The grouse of the plaintiff is that Mr Buhari allegedly violated some provisions of the Nigerian constitution in the manner of his political appointments.
In the suit marked FHC/ABJ/709/2021 and instituted on his behalf by his counsel, Moses Owuru, the plaintiff accused Mr Buhari of violating sections 7and 8 of the Constitution in the appointments of Ms Dankaka and Mr Tukur as Executive Chairman and Executive Secretary of the FCC respectively.
The plaintiff who claimed to be an indigene of Osun State, alleged that the two appointments were in clear breach of section 4 of the FCC Act having been made from the Northern part of the country.
He, therefore, prayed the court to issue an order compelling Mr Buhari to immediately dissolve the board of the commission and re-constitute it to reflect the principle and letters of the Federal Character Commission as enshrined in the 1999 constitution.
The plaintiff who claimed to have been aggrieved with the appointments also sought another order to compel Mueeba Dankaka and Mohammed Tukur to vacate their offices without any delay.
In a 21-paragraph affidavit in support of the suit, plaintiff averred that Buhari on March 18, 2020 appointed Ms Dankaka and on June 2, 2020, was confirmed by the Senate as Executive Chairman of the FCC.
He also claimed that Buhari on appointed Mr Tukur on 6 April 2017 as Executive Secretary of the FCC. He added that the appointee had continued to function in office since the expiration of his tenure on 6 April 2021.
The plaintiff averred that since the two appointees being from the North, Buhari breached sections 7 and 8 of Nigeria’s constitution with their appointments.
He urged the court to declare the appointments unlawful, unconstitutional, illegal, null and void.
The paintiff also wants the court to declare that Buhari and other defendants in the suit are bound to abide by the provisions of the constitution as they relate to the principle of proportional sharing of all political offices.
Meanwhile, the judge, Inyang Ekwo, has fixed November 11 for hearing.
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