The Presidential Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Abuja has dismissed a fragment of the the preliminary objection filed by President Buhari on May 14, which argued that Atiku Abubakar was not qualified to challenge his re-election.
The tribunal held that the argument was “diversionary, incompetent and academic” and that President Buhari should have rather filed a Cross-Appeal to query Atiku’s eligibility. It however also dismissed the argument by Atiku that President Buhari’s entire reply was incompetent.
It will be recalled that the All Progressives Congress, APC, had insisted that Atiku is a Cameroonian and not a Nigerian by birth.
The tribunal said it had the discretion to consider the reply. More so, relying on Paragraph 16(a) and (b) of the First Schedule to the Electoral Act, the tribunal struck out aspects of the petitioners processes relating to witness statement of former Aviation Minister and National Collation Agent of the PDP during the presidential election, Chief Osita Chidoka.
Chidoka’s evidence, who tendered documents to support the allegation that result of the presidential poll was electronically transmitted to INEC’s central server was struck out holding that his evidence introduced fresh facts to the petition.