On May 8th, the tribunal will commence the hearing of petitions that challenge Tinubu’s election

The Presidential Election Petitions Court sitting at the Court of Appeal in Abuja has fixed Monday, May 8, for pre-hearing of the petitions challenging the victory of President-elect Bola Tinubu.

The Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof Yakubu Mahmood had, on March 1 declared the All Progressives Congress (APC) Presidential candidate the winner of the February 25 presidential election.

A reliable source at the registry of the Presidential Election Petition Court in Abuja, who confirmed the date for the hearing and craved anonymity added that, notice of the pre-hearing session had been served on all the parties in the matter.

At the pre-hearing session, the Court will look at other applications filed before the main hearing of the petitions.

The Presidential Election Petition Court is expected to provide a full timetable for the hearing of the substantive petitions filed against Tinubu’s victory at the election.

Atiku Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Peter Obi of the Labour Party (LP) and others want Tinubu’s victory upturned on the grounds of substantial noncompliance with the provisions of the Constitution, the Electoral Act and INEC’s guidelines for the conduct of the election.

Atiku, who hinged his petition on five grounds, is seeking the conduct of a fresh election due to alleged irregularities at polling units on February 25.

He and the PDP said Tinubu was declared the winner when all results and accreditation data from polling units had not been transmitted and uploaded by INEC.

Obi is also alleging various irregularities, insisting Tinubu and his running mate, Senator Kashim Shettima, were not qualified to contest.

The LP Presidential candidate insists that, the President-elect did not win the majority of lawful votes and failed to garner one-quarter of votes in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

The three other political parties, Action Alliance (AA), Allied Peoples Movement (APM) and Action Peoples Party (APP) had, in their separate petitions, challenged Tinubu’s declaration as the winner of the presidential election by INEC

AA, in the petition marked, CA/PEPC/01/2023 has INEC, APC, Tinubu and Hamza Al-Mustapha as respondents.

APM, in its petition numbered, CA/PEPC/04/2023, joined INEC, APC, Tinubu, Kashim Shettima and Kabir Masari as respondents.

In the petition of the APP Tinubu, APC and INEC are the 1st to 3rd respondents respectively, while the AA and its presidential candidate, Solomon David Okanigbuan, APM and APP are challenging the outcome of the presidential election on the grounds of alleged substantial non-compliance with the electoral laws as well as INEC guidelines for the conduct of the election.

While the AA claimed that its candidate, Solomon-David Okanigbuan, was excluded from the presidential poll, based on which the election should be voided, the APM is contending that Tinubu was not qualified to contest the election on the grounds of the alleged double nomination of his vice-presidential candidate.

It is also questioning Tinubu’s candidacy on the grounds of the substitution of the initial “placeholder”, Kabir Masari, with Shettima

On its part, the APP claimed that Tinubu was, at the time of the election, not qualified to contest the poll by virtue of the provisions of Sections 131(c) and 142 of the Constitution and Section 35 of the Electoral Act 2022.

The APC has already filed its objection to the five petitions filed against the victory of its presidential candidate, Bola Tinubu in the election, urging the Tribunal to discountenance the complaints of the petitioners.

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