Drama As Atiku, Peter Obi begin battle with Tinubu at Supreme Court

The stage is now set for the Supreme Court to hear appeals filed by Atiku Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Peter Obi of the Labour Party (LP) challenging President Bola Tinubu’s victory in the February 25, 2023, Presidential election. Chichi Ojei of the Allied Peoples Movement (APM) has also filed an appeal seeking to nullify President Tinubu’s election, and the hearing of these petitions begins today, October 23.

The Supreme Court had officially communicated the hearing date to all parties through notices sent on October 19.

Atiku’s Appeal: Atiku Abubakar, apart from contesting the verdict of the Presidential Election Petition Court (PEPC) that upheld Tinubu’s election, has also applied for permission to present a copy of Tinubu’s academic records from Chicago State University (CSU).
Atiku alleges that Tinubu submitted a forged CSU certificate to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) prior to the 2023 elections. Additionally, Atiku seeks a court order from Washington, D.C., to compel the FBI to release documents related to President Tinubu’s $460,000 forfeiture case. Atiku, supported by a team of 67 lawyers led by Chief Chris Uche, SAN, has filed 35 grounds of appeal challenging Tinubu’s victory. He argues that the PEPC’s decision was not only against the weight of evidence but also resulted in a serious miscarriage of justice.
He maintains that the PEPC panel erred in law by not annulling the presidential election due to non-compliance with the Electoral Act of 2022, despite evidence of INEC’s breach of election laws and regulations.

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Obi’s Appeal: Peter Obi, with his legal team led by Dr. Livy Uzoukwu, SAN, has filed 51 grounds of appeal at the Supreme Court to challenge Tinubu’s victory in the presidential election. Obi aims to overturn the judgment of the PEPC, which dismissed his petitions against Tinubu on September 6. He argues that the PEPC panel erred in law and arrived at an incorrect conclusion by dismissing his petition. Obi alleges that the panel incorrectly assessed the evidence he presented and caused a grave miscarriage of justice by ruling that he did not specify polling units where irregularities occurred during the election. He also contends that the panel unjustly dismissed his claim that INEC uploaded 18,088 blurred results on its IReV portal.

Ojei’s Appeal: Chichi Ojei has filed a 10-ground appeal seeking to invalidate President Tinubu’s election, asserting that he was ineligible to participate in the presidential poll. She and her party argue that the PEPC wrongfully dismissed their petition challenging Tinubu’s nomination by the APC based on a technicality.

 

The APM claims that the PEPC erred in law by ignoring the allegation that Tinubu’s running mate and Vice President, Kashim Shettima, was nominated twice for different positions by the APC in relation to the 2023 general elections.

 

The APM argues that the PEPC’s verdict was wrong in dismissing the case against Tinubu’s election, as Sections 131 and 142 (1) of the 1999 Constitution, as amended, were interconnected and could not be confined to pre-election matters. They contend that a valid election involves qualifications and disqualifications stipulated in the Constitution.

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The APM seeks a declaration from the Supreme Court that INEC’s return of Tinubu as President-elect was null, void, and legally ineffective. They also request the court to nullify all votes received by the APC in the Presidential election and order INEC to declare the second-highest scorer as the presidential election winner.

Tinubu’s Counter Appeal: President Tinubu, along with the APC and INEC, has urged the Supreme Court to dismiss these appeals, arguing that they lack merit. Tinubu also calls on the court to reject Atiku’s application to present his CSU certificate. 

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