2023 presidential election petition: Tribunal sets trial date kick-off 

The Presidential Election Petition Court (PREPEC) Tuesday ordered for the consolidation of the petitions of the Labour Party, the Allied People’s Movement (APM) and the People’s Democratic (Party).

In the petition, the parties are challenging the outcome of the last presidential election won by Asiwaju Bola Tinubu of the All Progressives Congress (APC).

The five-member panel of justices led by Justice Haruna Tsammani said the consolidation would facilitate speedy hearing of the petitions because the issues raised by the parties are similar.

The tribunal therefore held that hearing in the petitions would commence from May 30.

Recalled that five political parties had earlier registered their grievances against the declaration of Tinubu as winner of the presidential election however, the Action Alliance (AA) and the Action People’s Party (APP) had long withdrew their petitions remaining the LP, APM and PDP.

The three remaining petitioners anchored their petitions on grounds such as irregularities, substantial non-compliance as well as corrupt practices etc, upon which they are asking the court to set aside the declaration of Tinubu as winner of the election.

Besides, while the petitioners are seeking the disqualification of Tinubu over alleged perjury and drug related offences, the APM is particularly urging the court to hold that the “place holder” introduced by Tinubu in respect of his Vice President nominee was unknown to law and as such the court should void the participation of the APC, Tinubu and his Vice President-elect, Senator Kashim Shettima in the February 25 presidential election.

In addition, both LP and PDP are faulting INEC’s return of Tinubu on the grounds that Tinubu did not score 25% of lawful votes cast in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

Meanwhile, Tinubu and APC have disclosed their intention not to speak with the media any further on the court proceedings.

A senior lawyer in the team of Tinubu and the APC, Chief Niyi Akintola informed the court that “we have agreed on this side that no lawyer will speak with the press on the proceedings.”

According to Akintola, the about 38 SANs representing Tinubu and the APC took the decision recently in one of their meetings.

Recall that the PREPEC on Monday refused to grant Atiku and Obi’s request for live streaming of the proceedings regarding their petitions.

Meanwhile, the Chairman of the Court, Justice Haruna Tsammani has fixed May 30 for full blown hearing of the three petitions.

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