Atiku approaches Supreme Court to void PEPC’s judgment on presidential poll
Presidential candidate of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Abubakar Atiku, has approached the Supreme Court, seeking to nullify the judgment of the Presidential Election Petition Court (PEPC), which, on September 6, upheld the declaration of Bola Ahmed Tinubu as winner of the 2023 presidential election.
Atiku, in a Notice of Appeal predicated on 35 grounds, insisted the tribunal’s judgment delivered by Justice Haruna Tsammani was a grave error and miscarriage of justice.
The Notice, filed by Atiku’s lead counsel and a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Chris Uche, is praying the Supreme Court to set aside the entire findings and conclusions of the tribunal, saying they did not represent a true picture of the grounds of his petition.
The court had held that Atiku and the presidential candidate of Labour Party, Peter Obi, failed to prove in their separate suits, allegations of electoral fraud against Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and Tinubu.
Atiku and Obi, however, had vowed to appeal outcome of the suits at the apex court. In court filings dated September 18, at the Supreme Court, Uche contended that PEPC failed to adequately evaluate Atiku’s evidence before reaching its conclusions.
The lawyer faulted the court’s use of “disparaging words” against Atiku which “evinced bias.” He further contended that among other issues, PEPC erred in law, when it “failed to nullify the presidential election held on February 25, 2023, on the grounds of non-compliance with the Electoral Act, 2022, when, by evidence before the tribunal, INEC conducted the election based on grave and gross misrepresentation, contrary to the principles of the Electoral Act 2022, based on the ‘doctrine of legitimate expectation’.”
Atiku prayed the Supreme Court to grant his appeal. In addition, the appellant urged the court to set aside the decision of the lower, which affirmed Tinubu’s victory. He urged the court to declare that Tinubu did not secure majority of lawful votes cast during the presidential election on February 25, 2023.
The former Vice President also prayed the court to hold that Tinubu was not qualified to vie for Nigeria’s presidency at the time he did, on account of his conviction in the United States for alleged drugs trafficking. Obi is expected to file his own appeal before a stipulated 14-day window expires.
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