An Abuja Federal High Court has reversed the decision of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to deregister the Youth Party of Nigeria, YPN.
The court ruled that INEC’s decision was a breach of the political party’s right to fair hearing.
In his judgment, Justice Inyang Ekwo, said the electoral umpire breached YPN’s right by deregistering it despite a pending case the party filed against INEC’s earlier threat.
Justice Ekwo’s ruling was on a suit filed by the Youth Party, marked: FHC/ABJ/CS/10/2020, which had INEC as the sole defendant.
The judge ruled that although INEC is empowered under Section 255(a) of the Constitution to deregister political parties, such power must be exercised within the ambit of the law.
“I condemn the action of the defendant in deregistering the plaintiff while its case was pending,” the judge said.
He added that INEC’s decision to deregister the plaintiff during the pendency of the case amounted to an arbitrary exercise of powers.
Reacting to the ruling, Counsel to the party, Barr. John Ochogwu, expressed happiness with the judgment of the court.
Ochogwu urged INEC to always observe the rule of law in the discharge of its statutory duties.