The Supreme Court has kept its decision pending on the appeal lodged by the Peoples Democratic Party and the Labor Party, contesting the ruling of the Court of Appeal, which upheld President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s victory in the 2023 Presidential Election. Meanwhile, the Allied Peoples Movement withdrew its appeal against President Tinubu’s election before the seven-member panel led by Justice Inooro.
Notably, Atiku Abubakar is endeavouring to introduce new evidence to challenge President Tinubu’s disqualification appeal. Comprehensive information regarding this matter can be found in a report compiled by the Legal Attorney Blog.
Security at the Supreme Court was heightened for the hearing of appeals filed by the PDP, Labor Party, and APM. This marks the first case that the Apex Court presides over following the verdict delivered by the Presidential Election Petition Court on September 6, 2023.
The PDP presented the initial appeal, and their legal representative, Chris Uche, informed the court of their interlocutory application. This application sought the court’s permission to introduce fresh evidence, citing Section 1371J of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as the basis for their request. The party and its presidential candidate clarified in their affidavits why this evidence wasn’t presented in the lower court. They implored the court to focus on the substance of the case and set aside technicalities.
A seven-member panel, with Justice Ian Kukoro and Justice Emmanuel Alim at the helm, posed several questions to the PDP. In response, the PDP’s counsel argued that the legal system in the US differs from that in the Commonwealth region. He referenced a US court order to support his position.
In turn, the president’s counsel claimed that the deposition indicated that the certificate didn’t originate from the school. The counsel for the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) requested that the court dismiss the appeal and contended that the deposition from the school’s registrar was not admissible until the deponent appeared in court to confirm it. The APC’s counsel aligned with the president’s representative.
Subsequently, the court decided to withhold its judgment. The court also deferred its ruling on the Labor Party’s appeal, with a date for review to be communicated to all parties. In a unanimous decision, the court dismissed the Alliance Peoples Movement’s appeal as frivolous, asserting that the issues raised by the appellants had already been resolved by the court. The Supreme Court emphasized that it is not intended for academic exercises. The APM’s counsel subsequently withdrew the appeal, which was duly dismissed.
The Chief of Staff to the President, Femi Gbajabiamila, alongside the National Security Adviser to the President, Nuhu Ribadu, the National Chairman of the APC, Abdullahi Ganduje, and the National Secretary of the APC, Bashiru A., were present in court to observe the day’s proceedings.
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