The Abuja Division of the Court of Appeal, on Friday, dismissed an appeal challenging the academic qualification of President Muhammadu Buhari to contest the last presidential election.

A three-man panel of the court led by Justice Tinuade Akomolafe-Wilson, in a unanimous judgment, affirmed the earlier verdict of the Federal High Court in Abuja which had dismissed the suit on the grounds that it was statute-barred and robbed the court of jurisdiction to hear it on merit.

Justice Akomaye Agim and Justice Ibrahim Idris, who read the lead judgment, were the two other members of the panel.

The appeal was filed by three Nigerians – Kalu Kalu Agu, Labaran Ismail, Hassy Jyari El-Kunis.

They had, via their originating summons, urged the Federal High Court to disqualify Buhari from contesting the presidential election on the grounds that he submitted false information regarding his academic qualification and certificate to the Independent National Electoral Commission as a candidate in the February 2r, 2019 poll.

They accused Buhari of falsely claiming to possess a school certificate he never had.

Justice Ahmed Mohammed of the Federal High Court in Abuja, had in his judgment delivered on May 2, 2019, struck out the suit for being statute-barred.

Delivering the lead judgment of the Court of Appeal on Friday, Justice Idris held that the matter had become statute-barred having not been filed within the 14 days period which the cause of action arose, as stipulated under Section 285(9) of the Nigerian Constitution.

He noted that the appellants only filed their suit before the Federal High Court on November 5, 2018, which was outside the 14 days period from October 18, 2018.

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