The All Progressive Congress (APC) has filed a motion at the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal in Abuja stating that the 2019 presidential candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, should have been ineligible to contest in the first place because he is not a Nigerian.
APC in its petition filed by its lead counsel, Lateef Fagbemi (SAN) faulted the candidacy of Atiku in the election, adding that Atiku was born in Jada, now Adamawa State but then in Northern Cameroon as of his birth in 1946, and is, therefore, a citizen of Cameroon.
The party accused the PDP of fielding a non-Nigerian as its candidate, and also faulted the competence of the petition against President Muhammadu Buhari, its own candidate.
APC urged the tribunal to dismiss PDP’s petition for incompetence, arguing that Section 131(a) of the Constitution stipulates that a person must be a citizen of Nigeria by birth to be qualified to contest for the office of the President.
The petition read:
“Atiku is not a citizen of Nigeria by birth and ought not to have even been allowed in the first place to contest the election.”
“The 11.1 million votes recorded in favor of the two petitioners should be voided and considered a waste by the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal.
“The Party averred that Atiku was born on November 25, 1946 in Jada, Adamawa, in Northern Cameroon and is, therefore, a citizen of Cameroon and not a Nigerian by birth.
“Prior to 1919, Cameroon was being administered by Germany and that following the defeat of Germany in World War 1, which ended in 1918, Cameroon became part of a League of Nations mandate territory which consisted of French Cameroon and British Cameroon in 1919.
“In 1961, a plebiscite was held in British Cameroon to determine whether the people preferred to stay in Cameroon or align with Nigeria.
“While Northern Cameroon preferred a union with Nigeria, the Southern Cameroon chose alignment with the mother country and that it was as a result of the plebiscite that Northern Cameroon, which included Adamawa, became a part of Nigeria.”