June 13, 2024

On Tuesday, the Presidential Election Petition Court concluded the hearing of a petition filed by Peter Obi and the Labour Party (LP) challenging the election of President Bola Tinubu. The CA/PEPC/03/2023 petition was brought forward by Mr. Obi and LP as petitioners, contesting the election that brought Mr. Tinubu into power.

The respondents in the case include the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Mr. Tinubu, Vice President Kashim Shettima, and the All Progressives Congress (APC).

The five-member panel, led by Justice Haruna Tsammani, reserved judgment and will communicate the date to the involved parties after adopting their final written addresses.

During the case, Abubakar Mahmoud, SAN, representing INEC, urged the court to dismiss the petition as lacking merit, pointing out that the petitioners misunderstood the use of technology during the election. He stated that the evidence presented showed that technology was appropriately deployed for the election, and the allegations of electronic collation of results were not supported by evidence.

Wole Olanipekun, counsel for Messrs Tinubu and Shettima, also argued for the dismissal of the petition, emphasizing the noncompliance of the results electronically uploaded to IreV and the absence of connectivity between the petitioners and the petition.

Lateef Fagbemi, SAN, representing the APC, aligned with the arguments of the other respondents and commented on the ambitious nature of the petition.

In response, Livy Uzoukwu, SAN, counsel for the petitioners, contended that the respondents failed to grasp the significance of IreV and emphasized the importance of the certified true copies of the blurred result sheets provided by INEC. Mr. Uzoukwu maintained that the petitioners had proven their case, particularly concerning allegations of noncompliance.

In summary, the Presidential Election Petition Court has concluded the hearing, and judgment is awaited in the petition challenging President Tinubu’s election. The respective counsels presented their arguments, and the court will decide on the matter based on the evidence and legal submissions made during the hearing.

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