11 August 2020 by VICTORIA ABAH
The Appeal court has set aside the judgment of the Federal High Court upholding the Independent National Electoral Commissions’s actions on de-registration of political parties.
In the judgment prepared by the president of the court of appeal, and delivered by a four man panel led by justice Sodipe Lokulo, the Court held that the de-registration was illegal having failed to follow due process.
The court also held that INEC’s actions was not in compliance with section 225(a)of the 1999 constitution as amended, as they did not indicate reasons for the de-registration of the political parties.
While making reference to section 40 of the constitution, the court held that citizens were entitled to freedom of association and as such the right confered on a party cannot be taken away except by due process.
The Court further held that the parties were challenging the process of their de-registration and not the act.
It therefore ordered that the appelants should be listed as registered political parties in the country.
INEC had said that the de-registered parties breached their requirements for registration as they failed to win at least twenty-five percent of votes cast in one state of the federation during the presidential election.