How Supreme Court judgement on naira notes will affect Tinubu’s swearing-in

The victory of Bola Tinubu at the February 25 presidential election may be upended following the landmark judgement of the Supreme Court affirmed the Central Bank of Nigeria as an agency of the federal government and thereby extended the validity of the disputed old naira notes till December 31.

Here’s why.

On Friday morning, a seven-member panel of justices established that the federal government of Nigeria under president Muhammadu Buhari’s leadership failed to follow the provisions of the Constitution before introducing and implementing the redesigned notes.

Three aggrieved governors — Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna, Yahaya Bello of Kogi, and Bello Matawalle of Zamfara — had prayed to the Supreme Court to restrain Mr. Buhari from withdrawing old naira notes from circulation in February. The reliefs were granted in March, within a month of their institution.

According to the judgement read by Emmanuel Agim, the federal government did not consult with the National Economic Council and National Council of States before implementing the policy deemed a flagrant violation of the 1999 Constitution.

In a related development, six states have approached the apex court, claiming that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) did not conduct last Saturday’s polls in accordance with the requirements of the Election Act 2022. They are demanding that the results of the polls be nullified.

The apex court in the naira redesign suit noted that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), although an independent entity (like Nigeria’s electoral body, INEC), was still under the federal government which is an agent of the federation, hence, subject to its laws.

“The federal government of Nigeria is an agent of the federation. The acts of the federal government is the act of the federation,” Mr. Agim averred in his judgement on Friday.

Just as the Supreme Court has the jurisdiction to rule on the violation of the CBN Act under the federal government, it also has the power to entertain the matter based on electoral law violation by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), as claimed by the six states.

The scope of the original jurisdiction covers any dispute. This court is vested with unlimited jurisdiction over disputes between states and the federation, the apex court stated.

The six states – Adamawa, Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Delta, Edo, and Sokoto – all ruled by the main opposition Peoples Democratic Party, said that the election process and nationwide failure to electronically transmit results from polling units run foul of multiple provisions of the electoral law.

Mr. Tinubu of the All Progressives Congress might lose his new title as president-elect if the plaintiffs can convince the Court that the INEC had violated the Election Act.

Source: Peoples Gazette

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Patrick Odey

Patrick Odey, a native of Benin, Edo State. He studied the English Language at the University of Benin, Edo State. He is a Blogger Contact:

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