Like PDP, Labour Party closes case at presidential election tribunal

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The Labour Party presidential candidate, Peter Obi, and his party on Friday closed their petition challenging President Bola Tinubu’s victory in the February 25 election at the presidential election petition tribunal.

Obi and LP are challenging the election in the petition marked CA/PEPC/03/2023 at the tribunal.

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Tinubu, Vice President Kashim Shettima, and All Progressives Congress (APC) were listed as respondents in the case.

The petitioners were given 21 days to prove their case against the respondents at the tribunal.

They told the panel they would call 50 witnesses to prove their case, but had summoned only 13 by the close of proceeding on Friday.

Earlier, counsel to the petitioners, Livy Uzoukwu (SAN), informed the panel that their 12th witness, Yunusa Tanko, was in court to be cross-examined by the respondents.

Mr. Kemi Pinhero (SAN) represented INEC while the duo of Wole Olanipekun (SAN) and Lateef Fagbemi (SAN) stood in for Tinubu/ Shettima and APC respectively.

Tanko, a member of the LP Situation Room, presented some documents to the tribunal.

Under cross-examination by the INEC counsel, the witness told the panel that the results given to them were mutilated and not readable.

When asked by Olanipekun how many agents LP had during the election, he said the party had over 130,000 while there were 176,974 polling units through the federation.

Tanko was also asked what he wanted the panel to do with the 12 states where LP won and what would happen to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate, Atiku Abubakar, who came second in the election.

The witness said he was challenging the entire results of the election because four months after the election, the results are still being downloaded from the IreV.

When asked by Fagbemi on why he did not provide the number of unlawful votes, he argued that the party’s experts had already given evidence on the number of disputed votes.

The respondents tendered through the witness judgments of the Federal High Court with FHC/ABJ/1454/2022 delivered on January 23, 2023, on the LP vs INEC case.

READ ALSO: INEC accuses Labour Party of using Commission as ‘whipping boy’ at Tribunal

They also tendered the Supreme Court judgment delivered on May 26 between PDP and INEC with three others.

The petitioners objected to the admissibility of the documents and reserved their reason in their final written addresses.

The court, however, admitted and marked the documents as exhibits.

Peter Yari, an ad-hoc staff of INEC, also gave his evidence on the election.

After Yari’s testimony, the petitioners’ counsel informed the panel that they are closing their case.

The respondents prayed the court to give them till next week to go home and celebrate the Sallah with their families and come back by July 3 to open their case.

The panel adjourned till July 3 for the respondents to open their case.

The PDP also closed its case at the tribunal on Friday.

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