Atiku reacts to Bulkachuwa’s recusal from tribunal
Nigeria’s opposition People’s Democratic Party presidential candidate Atiku Abubakar has commended the President of the Court of Appeal, Zainab Bulkachuwa, for withdrawing from the presidential election petition tribunal.
“As a matter of fact, I have great respect for her being a pioneer and advocate for gender equality and female empowerment,” Abubakar said in a statement on Thursday.
“It is with this in mind that I commend Justice Bulkachuwa for recusing herself from the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal Panel hearing my petition,” he added.
Abubakar and his party had earlier requested that Bulkachuwa withdraws from the presidential election petition tribunal challenging the victory of President Muhammadu Buhari in the February presidential poll.
They asked Bulkachuwa to withdraw from the five-member panel she headed stating that her husband is a Bauchi senator-elect on the All Progressives Congress platform.
“One of the principal maxims of the Common Law is nemo judex in causa sua (no man shall be a judge in his own case),” Abubakar said in his statement.
“Being that her husband, Alhaji Mohammed Bulkachuwa, is an All Progressives Congress Senator-elect and the case she was expected to adjudicate upon had a bearing on that party.”
However, during the tribunal prolonged ruling on Wednesday, the tribunal ruled against Abubakar and the PDP. It said both parties could not prove the possibility of bias against the judge and that Bulkachuwa’s husband was not a party to the suit.
Despite the ruling of the tribunal, however, Bulkachuwa refused herself from the panel on ‘personal grounds.’
“Her action showed courage and is an act of patriotism. She has, by this action, increased the confidence the public have for the judiciary,” Abubakar said.
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