Tinubu, APC Prepares To Respond To Petitions Seeking His Removal As President

Tinubu, APC Prepares To Respond To Petitions Seeking His Removal As President

President Bola Tinubu is set to defend himself against petitions aiming to remove him from office on June 30, according to an announcement by the Presidential Election Petition Court in Abuja.

The three petitioners are set to conclude their cases by Friday include former Vice President Alhaji Atiku Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Labour Party candidate, Peter Obi, and the Allied Peoples Movement (APM).

These petitioners contest the election that declared President Tinubu, of the All Progressives Congress (APC), the winner on February 25.

While both Atiku and Obi claim to have won the presidential race, the APM seeks to nullify all votes for Tinubu due to his alleged disqualification.

The APM argues that Tinubu’s candidacy became invalid with the withdrawal of Ibrahim Masari, who had initially been nominated as the APC’s Vice-Presidential candidate, citing Section 131(c) and 142 of the 1999 Constitution as amended.

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All petitioners demand the revocation of Tinubu’s Certificate of Return, issued by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

In terms of witnesses, Atiku aims to call upon 100 witnesses, Obi plans to bring in 50, while the APM, relying on documentary evidence, intends to summon only one.

The court initially extended the petitioners’ time to close their cases by two days beyond what was recommended in the pre-hearing report.

Atiku has so far presented 25 witnesses and intends to call upon five more. His lawyer, Uche, stressed that the remaining evidence they wish to submit would cover the testimony of the remaining 70 witnesses.

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However, Uche lamented the difficulties faced in acquiring Certified True Copies (CTC) of documents from the INEC, likening the process to demanding weapons from an opponent in a war.

He criticized INEC for the disorganization of the forms provided to them.

Despite challenges and the postponement of proceedings to allow for the organization of documents, Atiku’s lawyer has moved to adjourn the case to Wednesday to facilitate a more systematic identification of the evidence to be presented.

In Obi’s case, the court permitted INEC, President Tinubu, and the APC to cross-examine his 7th witness, Mpeh Clarita Ogar, an employee of Amazon Web Services (AWS).

AWS was contracted by INEC to offer technical support during the general elections.

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She disputed INEC’s claims of technical glitches on election day that inhibited electronic transmission of results.

However, under cross-examination, she admitted not being sent to court by Amazon and conceded to the possibility of a glitch occurring.

Subpoenas served to INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmoud Yakubu, elicited a response through a representative, who confirmed that they held some requested documents, but others were either non-existent or dispersed across various states, making them difficult to assemble.

This revelation led to accusations from Obi’s lawyer of intentional frustrations by INEC. Despite these challenges, the court adjourned for further hearing on the petitions till Wednesday.

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