No fewer than 200 private legal practitioners from the 19 Northern states have volunteered to assist Governor Kabir Yusuf of Kano State in winning his gubernatorial election appeal case at the Supreme Court of Nigeria.
They spoke under the banner of “Abba Kabir Yusuf Volunteer Lawyers Forum For The 19 – Northern States And Abuja.”
Addressing a press briefing at Arewa House on Sunday in Kaduna, the spokesman of the lawyers, Yusuf Ibrahim, urged President Bola Tinubu and the Supreme Court not to allow Nigeria to become a one-party state, saying that it is an unhealthy democratic practice.
They expressed concern over the independence of the judiciary in Nigeria.
The lawyers insisted that the rule of law must be obeyed to ensure the vote of every Nigerian is counted during elections.
They expressed solidarity with Mr Yusuf, stating that the Appeal Court judgment favouring APC was a clear miscarriage of justice.
“We volunteer as private legal practitioners to participate in the litigation in solidarity with Governor Yusuf at the Supreme Court of Nigeria.
“We want to represent the truth in the fight to reclaim his mandate and that of the people of Kano State,” Mr Ibrahim added.
The group also demanded a reworking of the Electoral Act.
It is pertinent to state here that the Electoral Act needs a holistic reworking to address these anomalies of our judicial system and democracy if we must save it,” he said.
According to the group, pre-election matters must be seen to be addressed as no longer litigable issues after the winner of an election has been declared.
They said, “The attempts by the court to conclude upon their findings to declare politicians as winners must also be divested of such powers. At best, order a re-run in the affected areas.
“The dangers are that, if this trend should proceed without being checkmated, then there would no longer be a need for open balloting and casting votes by the general electorate.
“This is so as their mandate would be taken over by those who know the rules of the game, and of course, it will no longer be a matter of who wins the election at the general voting posts.”
The lawyers called on the Supreme Court to resist external interference to protect the judiciary’s image and uphold the rule of law.