By Ise-Oluwa Ige
ABUJAâ€”The Abuja Division of the Court of Appeal will tomorrow give judgment on the legal dispute surrounding the controversial emergence of former Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, Professor Charles Soludo, as the flagbearer of the Peoplesâ€™ Democratic Party, PDP, for the February 6, gubernatorial election in Anambra State.
The appellate court fixed the date yesterday after it rolled together the substantive appeal by Soludoâ€™s political opponents challenging his candidature with the preliminary objection maintained by PDP and the ex-CBN boss against hearing of the appeal on its merit.
Justice Mary Odili, who presided over the three-member panel of the Court of Appeal, said yesterday that the decision to hear and fix the judgment date in the matter was to allow the Supreme Court the liberty to pronounce on a separate but related issue submitted before it by Soludo and PDP.
Specifically, the verdict of the Court of Appeal will determine whether or not there would be any need for the Supreme Court to examine the merit of the appeals before it.
PDP had nominated Soludo as its flagbearer without organising primaries recognised by its constitution and other relevant statutes.
Some of the party members who paid necessary fees to participate in the primaries were aggrieved.
Specifically, Mr. Valentine Ozigboh, Mrs. Victoria Nwankwo, Mrs. Nkoli Imo and Mr. Ferdinand Okoye took out a writ before an Abuja High Court sitting at Zone 11, Wuse, Abuja.
But the trial judge, Justice R Senchi, struck out the suit for want of jurisdiction.
He specifically explained that the issue of nomination of Soludo which they brought to court was a completed act and that it was late in the day to issue any order.
Aggrieved by the verdict, the foursome came before the Abuja Court of Appeal to reverse the judgment.
They also asked the court to issue an interim order stopping Soludo from campaigning for the poll or parading himself as PDPâ€™s flagbearer.
Although Soludo and PDP begged the court not to grant such an order on the account of absence of material facts before the court, the interim order was granted.