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No, the International Criminal Court hasn’t ordered Nigeria to stop swearing in of president-elect Bola Tinubu

IN SUMMARY: Bola Tinubu is set to be sworn in as Nigeria’s president on 29 May 2023, even as his rivals challenge his election victory.

Nigeria's president-elect, Bola Tinubu, is expected to be sworn in on 29 May 2023 while the country’s election results are still disputed.

On 1 March Tinubu was declared the winner of the presidential election held on 25 February. He will succeed president Muhammadu Buhari whose rule was limited to two terms and started in 2015.

But Tinubu’s victory is being challenged in court by his rivals. The tribunal hearing the arguments started on 8 May. 

A verdict is not expected before the inauguration.

A Facebook post however claims that the International Criminal Court (ICC) has asked Nigeria’s top judge to stop the swearing-in.

It reads: “Breaking News: International Criminal Court ‘ICC orders Chief Justice of Nigeria to halts Tinubu swearing-in.”

It gives more details: “The chairman of the ICC ‘Greg Barclay’ has ordered ‘Olukayode Ariwoola’ the Chief Justice of Nigeria to halt Tinubu's swearing-in as president until the presidential fate is well decided by the court.” 

The same claim appeared on Facebook here, here, here and here


ICC spokesperson says it hasn’t issued order

The ICC investigates and, where necessary, tries people who have committed serious crimes of concern to the international community. These include war crimes, genocide and crimes against humanity. 

Justice Olukayode Ariwoola is Nigeria’s chief justice, presiding over the supreme court.

But the Facebook post confuses the International Cricket Council, also known by the acronym ICC, with the International Criminal Court. 

Barclay is the chair of the cricket council while judge Piotr Hofmański heads the International Criminal Court

We checked the international court’s website, Facebook and Twitter accounts for any statement relating to this claim but our search came up empty.

Fadi El Abdallah, spokesperson for the court, told Africa Check the organisation hasn’t issued such a directive. He said: “The ICC didn’t not make any order of that kind.”

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