The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has raised concerns over allegations made by Yusuf Gagdi, a federal lawmaker from the All Progressives Congress (APC), suggesting that APC possesses the capability to sway decisions in election matters through its influence on the judiciary.
In a press statement released on Monday via the party’s official Twitter page, PDP called upon Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Olukayode Ariwoola, to thoroughly investigate these claims, asserting that they substantiate existing suspicions of a concerted effort by APC leaders to manipulate election petition outcomes.
Expressing dismay over Gagdi’s purported bold statements, PDP emphasized the need for the judiciary’s integrity to be safeguarded.
The party contends that such boasts, as echoed in a viral video featuring Hon. Yusuf Gagdi, are indicative of a broader strategy employed by certain APC figures to interfere with the judiciary, particularly at the Appeal and Supreme Court levels.
In the video, Gagdi confidently declares, “We have gone to the Appeal Court, and the final destination is the Supreme Court, and we will meet there. That is where we will know whom they know and they will know whom we know.”
PDP’s statement suggests that Gagdi’s remarks corroborate suspicions of a specialised team within APC, comprising two former Governors now serving as cabinet ministers and a prominent APC leader from the North East Zone.
This team allegedly operates with the explicit mandate to influence judicial officers, leading to biased judgments against PDP, as evidenced by recent decisions from the Plateau State Election Appeal Court Panel.
PDP’s concern extends to a former governor of APC allegedly paying $5 million to influence election petition matters in Plateau State, specifically aiming to sway judgments against Governor Caleb Mutfwang’s victory.
The party argues that these actions violate established legal principles, including the Supreme Court’s pronouncement that one political party cannot interfere in the internal affairs of another.
The statement also highlights the controversial conduct of the Plateau State Election Appeal Court Panel, which, according to PDP, has contributed to eroding public confidence in the judiciary.
The PDP contends that the panel’s decisions, seemingly contradictory and conflicting, have led to a loss of trust in the judiciary as the ultimate arbiter.
The implications of these allegations, PDP argues, are far-reaching.
The erosion of public confidence in the judiciary, coupled with APC’s claim of influence even at the Supreme Court, poses a significant threat to the integrity of the country’s highest temple of justice.
PDP warns that such a loss of confidence could potentially drive Nigerians towards self-help, creating a dangerous recipe for anarchy, chaos, and a breakdown of law and order.
As tensions rise in Plateau State, with citizens taking to the streets in protest of the Appeal Court Panel’s decisions, PDP underscores the urgent need for intervention.
The party insists that the judiciary remains the last line of defense for the nation’s democracy and political stability.
Consequently, PDP calls on CJN Olukayode Ariwoola to establish a high-powered panel to thoroughly investigate the APC’s claims of having influential figures within the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court.
Simultaneously, PDP urges an inquiry into the bribery allegations against the Plateau State Election Appeal Court Panel.
Source: Sahara Reporters