Minister of State for Labour, Festus Keyamo, has said Prof Ben Nwabueze was wrong in criticsising the Supreme Court judgment which dismissed the petition filed by the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar.
Keyamo, in a statement accused Prof. Nwabueze of speaking based on his bias and support for the PDP and not on facts.
Keyamo said: “I nearly succumbed to the urge to ignore Prof. Ben Nwabueze’s position on the Supreme Court decision in Atiku vs INEC as expressed in his press release made on October, 31. However, on deeper reflection, I came to the conclusion that when the issue involved is not personal, but one of national interest, it behooves any concerned and informed Nigerian to set the record straight for the sake of posterity. This is more so because Prof. Nwabueze did not speak from the position of an elder statesman.
“Prof. Nwabueze, delved into the practice and procedure of the apex court in hearing and determining time- bound appeals and the propriety or otherwise of same when viewed in the light of the provisions of Section 36(1) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999. Prof. Nwabueze’s submissions contain deliberate misinformation (given his pedigree) which become magnified when viewed vis-à-vis the provisions of the law, the settled decisions of courts and the precedents already long established by the apex court.”
“This is not the first time the Supreme Court will determine an appeal summarily and give reasons later. As a matter of law, the power of the Supreme Court to do this is constitutional. Section 285 of the Constitution allows this procedure and it was given judicial sanction in the case of Ikenya Vs. P.D.P. (2012) 12 NWLR (PT. 1315) P.493 where the Court held inter alia that the provision of section 285(8) of the Constitution can only be exercised by the Supreme Court.”