Anxiety Looms as Presidential Election Tribunal Hears Obi, Atiku’s Petitions Today

Today being May 8, the Presidential Election Tribunal will start hearing the petitions brought before it by opposition parties challenging the election of the president-elect, Bola Tinubu.


Remember that some of the candidates who supposedly lost in the February 25 presidential election went to court to seek redress after Tinubu of the All Progressives Congress, APC, was declared the winner, claiming that the election had been rigged in the ruling party's favor.


Also, keep in mind that Atiku Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party, Peter Obi of the Labour Party, and others had petitioned the tribunal to overturn Tinubu's victory on the grounds of grave non-compliance with the Constitution's provisions, the Electoral Act, and INEC's guidelines for the conduct of the election.


The former vice president Atiku is pleading with the court to order a fresh election to be held after there were allegedly irregularities at the voting locations during the presidential election. He based his petition on five grounds.


According to Atiku and his party, Tinubu was declared the winner of the election before INEC had transmitted and uploaded all of the results and accreditation information from the polling places.


Also, the former Anambra governor, Peter Obi, claims there were other irregularities in the election process and maintains that Tinubu and Senator Kashim Shettima were not eligible to run.


Obi added that Tinubu was unable to win the majority of legitimate votes or one-fourth of the vote in the Federal Capital Territory, or FCT.


The Court is expected to announce a complete schedule for hearing the substantive petitions brought against the President-elect at the election tribunal during today's pre-hearing session.


Festus Keyamo, the minister of state for labor and employment, claimed that foreign lawyers had been brought in from abroad to thwart Tinubu's May 29 inauguration.


Femi Fani-Kayode, a senior member of the ruling party, claimed in a tweet that Olusegun Obasanjo hired foreign attorneys to represent Peter Obi.


In a jeering tweet, the former Aviation Minister captioned a video, “when Peter heard that the Russian lawyer that OBJ had procured for him to represent him at the Election Petition Tribunal was no longer coming. Poor, tired soul! Pls pray for him”.


Members of Obi's legal team, however, are all Nigerians, according to Dr. Yunusa Salisu Tanko, chief spokesperson for the LP presidential campaign council in the already-completed election, who told the Daily Post on Sunday.


He said, “As far as I know, the lawyers are all Nigerians, I have not seen any foreign lawyer in the legal team.”


He was upbeat about how the process would turn out and insisted that the party's candidate would deliver speeches that could not be criticized.


"From what we are presenting to the court, we are very optimistic that they cannot find fault in our presentation”, he added.



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