2023 elections: Nigeria on the brink again?

Results from the recently held governorship and state houses of assembly elections have shown the new political terrain we find ourselves. Some people find it difficult to accept the outcome of the contests, while others emerged victorious. Some of those who lost are already in the court filling petitions at the tribunal.

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has contributed to a credible election by doing its part. It is now time for the court to play its part. But do we respect judicial decisions in this nation? We recently witnessed that the Supreme Court voided the naira redesign policy, but was ignored, leaving Nigerians to suffer the consequences.

Peter Obi of the Labour Party, LP, and Atiku Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, have already filed their petitions challenging the presidential election won by Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu of the All Progressives Congress, APC. What will be their fate, will there be a rerun or case dismissed? Atiku Abubakar asked that he be recognised as the winner and that the February 25 election be nulified due to alleged irregularities. He requested INEC to issue him the Certificate of Return, which had been given to Tinubu, the winner of the election.

Peter Obi, on the other hand, also submitted the same petition. First, Tinubu and Shettima’s ineligibility to run for president in the February 25 election is what Obi and his party are asking the court to rule on. According to the petitioners, Tinubu had been convicted of drug trafficking in the US whereas Shettima entered the contest as a sitting senator. Additionally, they want the court to revoke Tinubu’s voting rights by declaring him ineligible.

The complainant is asking the court to rule that Tinubu’s declaration as the next president of Nigeria was unlawful and unconstitutional since he fell short of the required number of votes needed to win the election in the Federal Capital Territory. Finally, the petitioners requested the court to determine that Obi received the most votes and got 25 percent of votes in each of at least two-thirds of Nigeria’s 36 states and the FCT.

The Supreme Court removed Dr. Andy Uba, who had been sworn in as governor just two weeks before, and reinstated Peter Obi as the governor of Anambra state on June 14, 2007. Will Obi be declared the winner this time around by the jury? However, the court will only accept those petitions and render decisions that may be favourable to them if they have evidence to support it. We are waiting to see how the trial will turn out.

The gubernatorial and state house of assembly results are revealed in the midst of this turmoil. The outcomes demonstrate how seriously the people have taken control of their destiny. Many states have demonstrated what they want, and the election provides it. Certain parties won the presidential election and their counterparts rose to the top; this happened in Zamfara, Plateau, Cross River, Sokoto, Kano, Ebonyi, Delta, Akwa Ibom, Katsina, Benue, and Kaduna states. Some governors seeking reelection for a second term lost.

The North is full of curiosities, which rolled beyond the invisible line, to record a history of the first female governor, Binani, of Adamawa state but it is inconclusive. What will be the fate of the election, will Fintiri be declared, or our first female governor? Now, as we await May 29, travelling with all deliberate speed to begin a new dawn, a new Nigeria of our dream, we hope to make our country better and great again. As I imagine, and many others do, we are in for a better future.

Isah Aliyu Chiroma,

Bauchi, Bauchi state

[email protected]

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