Senior Advocate of Nigeria and Human rights activist, Femi Falana, have said that the constitution does not permit former President Goodluck Jonathan to seek re-election into the office of the President.
Falana made this known in a statement on Wednesday night when he said Jonathan is affected by the constitution amendment.
Recall that President Muhammadu Buhari had signed a constitutional amendment that restricts a Vice President or Deputy governor who completes the term of a President or a governor, from contesting for the office of the President or Governor respectively, more than once.
This is following Jonathan’s taking over from late President Umaru Yar’Adua on May 5, after the demise or the later.
Jonathan who contested and won the office of the president in the 2011 election was sworn in for another term on May 29, 2011.
Speaking on Jonathan’s eligibility to contest in the election, Falana said, “It has been confirmed that former President Goodluck Jonathan has decided to join the All Progressives Congress (APC) with a view to contesting the 2023 presidential election.
“However, the former President is disqualified from contesting the said election by virtue of 137 (3) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 as amended which provides as follows: A person who was sworn in to complete the term for which another person was elected as President shall not be elected to such office for more than a single term.”
Indeed, the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (Fourth Alteration, No 16) Act, 2017 says: “The Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (in this Act referred to as “the Principal Act”) is altered as set out in this Act. Section 137 of the Principal Act is altered, by inserting, after subsection (2), a new subsection “(3)”.
“(3)” A person who was sworn in as President to complete the term for which another person was elected as President shall not be elected to such office for more than a single term.”