Friday’s ruling by the Supreme Court upholding the deregistration of the National Unity Party (NUP) does not affect a set of 22 parties, whose appeal is pending before the court.
The parties have clarified earlier reports that the move by Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to deregister 74 political parties in the country had been upheld by the apex court.
Barrister Igwe Emeka Benjamin, the National Chairman of People for Democratic Change (PDC), one of the 22 political parties, said in a statement that the ruling on NUP has not sealed their own fate.
In the statement issued on Friday in Abuja, Benjamin said the 22 parties got victory at the Court of Appeal and that they are not before the Supreme Court in NUP’s case.
According to him, “The affirmation of the deregistration of National Unity Party, NUP, by the Supreme Court of Nigeria has in no way sealed the fate of the 22 parties before the Supreme Court, or other parties at the various stages of litigation.
“This assertion is borne out of the fact that the deregistration of NUP was affirmed by the Court of Appeal while delivering their judgment in ACD & 21 Others vs AG Federation & INEC , and also NUP’s case was thoroughly thrashed out and distinguished from the case of ACD & 21 other parties whose deregistration was nullified by the Court of Appeal as being unconstitutional in their judgment of 10 August, 2020 in Appeal No. CA/ABJ/CV/507/2020.
“These 22 parties whose appeal are pending before the Supreme Court still remain registered until their appeal is determined.
“The decision in NUP binds only NUP, and does not in any way bind those parties who got victory at the Court of Appeal because they are not parties before the Supreme Court in NUP’s case.”
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