Court fixes new date for hearing over Atiku’s citizenship

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Court fixes new date for hearing over Atiku’s citizenship

A Federal High Court in Abuja has fixed a new date for the hearing of a suit challenging the citizenship of former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar.

The hearing which was supposed to hold yesterday was moved to September 27.

Justice Inyang Ekwo made the decision after the lawyer to the plaintiff, Akinola Oladimeji, said he was not well informed about the hearing.

At the mention of the case, filed by a group, the Incorporated Trustees of Egalitarian Mission for Africa, Oladimeji told the court he was not prepared to go on because he was told about the case only on Wednesday that it would hold yesterday.

The lawyer said he was earlier informed that the case was to come up for hearing on September 20.

Upon learning that there was a mix-up in the scheduling of the case, Justice Ekwo adjourned till September 27 for hearing but told the plaintiff that it would be the last adjournment he would grant on the matter.

Egalitarian Mission filed the suit in 2019 to challenge Atiku’s eligibility to contest for President, arguing that the businessman was not born a Nigerian.

Other defendants in the suit are the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF).

The plaintiff asked the court to declare that by provisions of Section 131(a) of the Constitution, only a Nigerian citizen by birth can contest for the office of the President.

Atiku also objected to the plaintiff’s right to challenge his nationality, arguing that it failed to show the interest it had above other citizens of Nigeria to be entitled to approach the court on the matter.

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