The Presidential Election Petitions Tribunal, sitting in Abuja, has set judgment for Seot 11, Wednesday, in the petition filed by the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abukakar and his party, challenging the declaration of President Muhammadu Buhari of the All Progressives Congress (APC) as the winner of the February 23, 2019, election.
The tribunal in a notice of hearing conveyed to parties in the petition through text messages and telephone calls, Tuesday, announced its resolution to make its findings and final decision on the petitio today (Wednesday).
Section 134 (1) to (3) of the Electoral Act provides that an election petition should be filed, heard and determined within 180 days and this will elapse on Sept. 15
A notice sighted by our correspondent, Tuesday, reads ” Re: CA/PEPT/ 002/2019 – ATIKU ABUBAKAR & 1 OR. VS INEC & 2 ORS TAKE NOTICE that judgment in the above petition has been slated for Wednesday, 11 September 2019 at the Court of Appeal/Presidential Petition Tribunal by 9.30am”.
Atiku had on March 18, 2019, filed a petition at the tribunal claiming that he and his party defeated President Buhari, who was declared the winner of the election by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
The tribunal, headed by Justice Mohammed Garba, which began its inaugural sitting on May 7, reserved the petition for judgment on August 21 after hearing the arguments of the parties before it.
During the hearing of the petition, Atiku called 62 witnesses out of the 400 he promised to present.
On the other hand, Buhari called six. However, both INEC and APC did not call any witness. Counsel to INEC, Yunus Usman (SAN), told the tribunal that it was not necessary to call witnesses, having extracted useful information from evidence given by the petitioners’ witnesses.
In the course of presentation of arguments, the PDP presidential candidate and his party said the election was marred by irregularities.