May 25, (THEWILL) – The Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja has ordered Ambrose Owuru, presidential candidate of the Hope Democratic Party (HDP) in the 2019 elections, to pay a fine of N40 million for filing a frivolous suit to stop the inauguration of President-elect, Bola Tinubu.
A three-member panel of the court, led by Justice Jamil Tukur, in a unanimous judgement on Thursday, held that the appeal by Owuru and his party, the HDP, amounted to an abuse of court process.
Justice Tukur held that the appeal was an invitation for the court to review its earlier decision, which it cannot do, adding that the issues in the appeal had earlier been determined by the court while sitting as an election petition court after the 2019 election with a judgment given on August 22, 2019.
He also held that the Supreme Court had in a judgment delivered on October 28, 2019, declared position on the case.
Tukur held that the case, having been litigated up to the Supreme Court, was an abuse of the judicial process by Owuru and his party to seek further litigation.
He upheld the January 30 judgment by Justice Inyang Ekwo of the Federal High Court, Abuja, which earlier dismissed the case for being an abuse of court process.
Justice Tukur proceeded to dismiss the appeal and ordered Owuru to pay each of the respondents N10 million in cost.
The respondents are President Muhammadu Buhari, the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF), the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and Tinubu.
The appeal by Owuru and HDP was against the January 30 judgment by Justice Ekwo, dismissing their suit in which Owuru had sought to be sworn in as Buhari’s successor.