Progressive Democratic Youth Front Abuja has called on the Minister of Federal Capital Territory Abuja, Alhaji Mohammed Musa Bello, to swear in all the elected chairmen of six Area Council.
The Youths in all the six Area Councils of the Federal Capital Territory said they received the devastating news of a cavalier judgement given by a High Court in the FCT to the effect that the newly democratically elected Chairmen and Councillors of all the six Area Councils will not be sworn-in as scheduled on Friday, 20th May, 2022 with shock.
The Youths noted that the anti-democratic and anti-people judgement followed a suit filed by the out-going Chairmen and Councillors seeking for one year extension of their tenure on the spurious, patently illogical and irrational ground that Section 108 of the New Electoral Act, 2022 has empowered them in the FCT to enjoy a four-year tenure.
The Progressive Democratic Youth Front in a statement signed by Sanbarka Danladi Garus, Chairman, Shehu Abdullahi Yaba, Secretary,
China Ugochi Chinedu, trustee, Madami Helen Duma, PRO and Zamani Tukura, organizing secretary explained that as democrats and respecters of the rule of law, they are are convinced that the judgement was not only dubious but questionable and suspicious.
They maintained that the said provisions of Section 108 do not affect the current Council elected officials in any way besides the fact that their tenure expires on May 20th, 2022.
The Youths stated that: “For one, the present Councillors were elected and sworn-in in the context of the law that stipulated a three-year term for Council Chairmen and Councillors. Therefore, in our candid opinion, and in the perception of any right-thinking, objective and informed commentators, since the provisions of Section 108 of the Electoral Act does not provide for Retroactive Effect to its implementation, it is trite in law and in logic, for the present crop of Council Chairmen and Councillors to expect to benefit from the ‘largesse’, so to say, contained in that section of the Act.
“Further to the above, it is a pertinent point to note that the Electoral Act, 2022 came into effect on the 16th of March, 2022 being the date that the Bill received Presidential Assent. How then, logically, do the people that went to court and the judge that gave the verdict have expected that they should benefit when, it is critical to note, that the election of the in-coming Council Chairmen and Councillors was conducted on the 12th of February, 2022, thereby preceding the coming of the Act by clear 32 days! Pray, what a travesty of logic and judicial wisdom which in our view, amounts to somersaulting and sitting justice on its head”.
The Progressive Democratic Youth Front said it is sad and painful that the Judiciary is allowing itself once again to be brought down low by the avarice and inordinate political ambitions of a few maniacal, parochial power-mongers who cannot be bothered if the society goes up in flames for as long as their narrow, self-centered interests are secured.
The youths noted that: “We understand that curiously, it was only the the FCT Minister, Mallam Musa Bello, that was sued to the exclusion of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC who conducted the election, certified the results and issued certificates of return as well as the National Assembly who enacted the law. We are accordingly appealing to the Honourable Minister who in public perception, is seen and revered as a complete gentleman, a stickler for justice, due process, probity and transparency in the conduct of affairs of the FCT since his assumption of office, NOT to allow himself to be messed up by the antics and combustible ambitions of a few unscrupulous, unconscionable and gregarious megalomaniacs”.
They called on FCT Minister to go ahead and swear-in the democratically and popularly elected representative of the people for sustenance of justice and equity and fair play,