Former CBN governor and Anambra PDP Gubernatorial candidate, Prof. Chukwuma Soludo

Former CBN governor and Anambra PDP Gubernatorial candidate, Prof. Chukwuma Soludo

The Conference of Nigerian Political Parties (CNPP) and the National Action Council (NAC) on Friday hailed the Supreme Court’s judgment on Chukwuma Soludo’s candidacy.

Similarly, Human Rights Lawyer and Activist, Mr Festus Keyamo and the Alliance for Democracy (AD) also lauded the judgment, describing it as good for participatory democracy.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Supreme Court on Thursday set aside the Wednesday ruling of an Appeal Court in Abuja.

The appellate court had restrained INEC from recognising Soludo as the candidate of the PDP in the Feb. 6, 2010 gubernatorial election in Anambra.

Over-ruling the appellate court’s decision, the Supreme Court reasoned that irreparable damage would be done to the former CBN governor and the PDP if the order was allowed to subsist.

The Supreme Court therefore, ordered INEC to confer on Soludo all the rights and privileges to be enjoyed by other candidates in the election.

The National Chairman of CNPP, Chief Maxi Okwu, told NAN that it was fair that the court did not truncate Soludo’s right to contest.

He remarked that the judgment had given room for the gubernatorial election process in Anambra to complete itself.

“It is good for Soludo to contest and let the people decide whether to vote for him or not,”  he said.

The National Chairman of the NAC, Dr Olapade Agoro, said: “It would have been wrong for Soludo and PDP to be eliminated from the race.

“Had the Supreme Court ruled otherwise, it would have led to litigations that would have been passed on to the 2010 election in Anambra.”

While reacting, Keyamo, said that the judgment would ensure fair play, explaining that it was wrong to stop anyone from contesting election based on issues.

Keyamo said that now that Soludo had been cleared to contest, he also stood the risk of being removed from office in case the issues were validated.

He urged all stakeholders in the Anambra gubernatorial polls to respect the judgment.

Keyamo explained that it was an interim measure as the Supreme Court did not stopped anyone from ironing out other issues.

The National Publicity Secretary of the AD, Mr Popoola Ajayi, also lauded the judgment, saying that it would have jeopardised the interest of democracy and fairplay if it went otherwise.

He also said it had not prevented anyone from further going to court on other issues concerning Soludo.