Jonathan can run in party primaries

January 11, 2011 12:00 am
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, ABUJA, Jan 11 – A Nigerian court Monday dismissed a lawsuit seeking to bar President Goodluck Jonathan from vying for the ruling party ticket just days to primaries in preparation of the April vote.

Three members of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) had petitioned the court to have Jonathan stopped from running for office because of a party policy dictating that its presidential candidate should be rotated between the north and south every two terms.

"The originating summons is hereby dismissed," ruled Justice Ishaq Bello of the Abuja high court, saying the plantiffs\’ case "did not disclose any reasonable cause of action."

Bello said the party rules had not been breached "since the party primary has not been held."

A PDP agreement says its presidential candidate should be rotated between the north and south every two terms.

President Jonathan and ex-vice president Atiku Abubakar, a northener, are in the race for the party\’s nomination for the April 9 election.

Jonathan\’s bid for the nomination has touched off a dispute over whether the party should abandon him in favour of a northern candidate.

The party agreement is intended to smooth over ethnic and religious divisions in Africa\’s most populous nation of around 250 tribal groups.

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