Atiku, PDP To Close Case Challenging Tinubu’s Election

Atiku Abubakar, the People’s Democratic Party’s (PDP) candidate for president, and his party will close their case at the Presidential Election appeal Court (PEPC) on Thursday in their joint appeal contesting the results of the presidential election on February 25.

According to a pre-hearing report, the petitioners were scheduled to conclude their case on Tuesday.

At the petition’s resumed hearing, the petitioner’s main attorney, Chris Uche, SAN, informed the court that his clients had lost two of the days that were allowed to them and pleaded with the judge to grant them two more days.

Because the June 12 Democracy Day Public Holiday was one among the days missed, the court sided with Uche.

Uche had already informed the court that notwithstanding

Earlier, Uche told the court that in spite of the spirit of cooperation that the court had appealed for, it was still difficult to get Certified True Copies (CTC) of documents from the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

According to him, getting documents from INEC is like asking your opponents for weapons.

He said that they had asked INEC for Form EC8A series for all the 36 states and the FCT but had gotten only 14 batches so far.

The senior counsel said that the documents were brought to them in court by INEC and that although certified by the commission, they had not been sorted out in a proper manner.
“These are forms EC8A series from the 35 states and we will start with Abia, and after tendering it, all parties will come together to ensure that they are sorted out properly,’’ he said.

This, however, did not go down well with the court and other counsel.

The documents even though certified, had not been paid for, adding that, it was the responsibility of the petitioners to sort out documents they subpoenaed.

The Chairman of the Court, Justice Haruna Tsammani decided to stand down the matter for about 10 minutes to allow counsel decide on how to proceed.

When the ten minutes elapsed, Uche prayed the court for an adjournment to allow his team prepare a schedule on how to tender the documents to the court on Wednesday.

The court subsequently adjourned hearing of the petition until Wednesday.

Speaking to newsmen after the court session, Uche said that ordinarily, the petitioners would have closed their case on Tuesday.

“We are closing our case on Thursday, it was supposed to end today but because we lost two days, one of which was the June 12 public holiday, the court graciously extended our time by two days.”

The petitioners who said during the pre-hearing session that they would call 100 witnesses have called only 25 of them so far.

Uche said that they might call an additional five witnesses to have a round figure of 30 witnesses.

The senior lawyer, however, said that some of the documents they sought to tender in the remaining two days would take the place of the remaining 70 witnesses.