By Eric Elezuo
The Presidential Candidate of the National Interest Party (NIP), Mrs Eunice Atuejide, in conjunction with her party and the Action Peoples Party (APP), has filed a suit at the Federal High Court, Abuja, seeking the disqualification of the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), President Muhammadu Buhari, from contesting the February 16, 2019 Presidential Election on the grounds that the President is not of sound mind.
In the Originating Summons, instituted by Counsel to the Plaintiffs, Edwin Muokwudo Edwin, and cited by The Boss, Mrs Atuejide and the two others are joining the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) as co-defendant with President Muhammadu Buhari.
The Plaintiffs, standing on Section 137(1)(c) and 251(1) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended) is seeking the determination of four questions among which is “whether having regard to section(1)(c) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 as amended the continuous manifestations of obvious loss of memory, confusion, disorientation, inability to speak coherently or understand clear language or question, mental decline, jumbled speech, making up of events that did not happen, inability to recognise common things and people, loss of cognitive ability, and repeatedly falling by the first defendant are medical signs and evidence of unsoundness of mind and therefore, warrant the subjection of the 1st defendant to a medical examination for the purpose of determination of whether or not he is or unsound mind for election into the office of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria in the 2019 General Elections.”
Consequently, the Plaintiffs are praying the court to make four declarations, chiefly among them is “that a candidate for the Presidential Election who has publicly displayed incidents of unsound mind such as inability to think or act independently, loss of memory, dementia, incoherence etc shall not be qualified for election to the office of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria”
In addition to the declaration, the Plaintiffs are also seeking an order of the court to direct President Muhammadu Buhari, who is the 1st defendant to undergo medical examination at the National Hospital Abuja for the purpose of determining whether or not he is of unsound mind for the election to the office of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria in the 2019 General Elections. This is in addition to making public the results of the findings of his medical examination.
It would be recalled that President Buhari has on many occasions, in the course of his campaigns for re-election, exhibited signs of dementia and non concentration.
In Asaba, he was said to have handed over the flag to Greg Ogboru as the presidential candidate of the party instead of as the gubernatorial candidate. At the same event, the President was unable to pronounce the word ‘gubernatorial’ even as he was consistently prompted by his aides.
At another rally, the President almost fell to the floor while walking back to his seat after addressing the crowd.
Again, at The Candidates hosted by Kadaria Ahmed, the President consistently missed questions and gave answers that were had absolutely nothing to do with the question asked. And in most cases, his vice, Prof Yemi Osinbajo, had to come to his aid, interpreting the questions and also giving answers, earning him a reprimand from the host, Kadaria at a point.
If the President is found to be of unsound mind as being proposed by the Plaintiffs, he will be disqualified from contesting the elections. And in the case where he has already contested and won, he may be stripped of the mandate.