The recent appointment of a 13-member legal team by the All Progressives Congress (APC) to defend Bola Tinubu, President-elect of Nigeria, at the election petition tribunal has generated a lot of buzz on social media.
Many have been surprised to find that Festus Keyamo, a prominent member of the APC Presidential Campaign Council, is not part of the legal team.
This lack of inclusion has led to mockery and criticism from some quarters, especially as Keyamo is seen to have been a staunch ally of Tinubu and the APC. In response to these mockery and criticisms, the Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Festus Keyamo, has stated that he is unable to join the team due to constitutional constraints.
According to Keyamo, “a serving Minister (by our Constitution) cannot be listed in any private legal team, though he/she can support the team in preparation.” This means that only after May 29th, the date of his relinquishment of office, can he formally join the Election Petition team.
This has been met with mixed reactions on social media. Some commentators have lauded the Minister’s adherence to the rule of law, while others have felt that his decision to not join the team has betrayed his support for Bola Tinubu and the APC.
Regardless of the opinion, it cannot be denied that Keyamo’s decision not to participate in the legal team is driven by a commitment to the rule of law and an understanding that the law must be observed at all times. His commitment to the law provides an example for the rest of the nation and is something to be admired.
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