News Beyond Boundaries

Presidential Election: PDP rejects tribunal ruling, heads to Supreme Court

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By Toby Prince

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has rejected the judgement of the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal which upheld President Muhammadu Buhari’s election.

The tribunal on Wednesday dismissed the petition filed by the PDP and its presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar.

The judgment by the five-member tribunal was read by Garba Mohammed.

The tribunal ruled each of the five arguments by the PDP and Mr Abubakar against them.

Mr Mohammed said the petitioners failed to prove their petition beyond reasonable doubt and the petition was dismissed in its entirety.

In a statement signed by its spokesperson, Kola Ologbondiyan, the party said it finds ”as bewildering that a court of law could validate a clear case of perjury and declaration of false information in an affidavit, as firmly established against President Muhammadu Buhari, even in the face of incontrovertible evidence”.

The party is also rudely shocked that the court took over the roles of the respondents’ lawyers who abandoned their pleadings by refusing to call evidence in defence of the petition. The court raked up all manner of excuses to make up for the yawning gaps occasioned by the total absence of any evidence from the respondents.

”Nigerians and the international community watched in utter disbelief when the tribunal ruled that one need not provide a copy or certified a true copy of educational certificate such individual claimed to possess, contrary to established proof of claims of certification.

“The party notes as strange that the court even went ahead to provide rationalisations in favour of President Buhari, even when all hard facts before it shows that he did not possess the claimed educational certificate and that the Army was not in possession of his WAEC certificate as claimed in the affidavit he deposed to in his Presidential nomination form.”

The PDP also described as shocking that the court approved the ”flawed declaration of President Buhari as the winner of the election despite evidence to show the perpetration of illegalities, manipulations, alterations, and subtraction of valid votes freely given to Atiku Abubakar by Nigerians”.

“Indeed, the pervading melancholic atmosphere across our nation since the verdict is a direct indication that the judgment has not fulfilled the desires and expectations of Nigerians.”

The party, however, encouraged Nigerians to remain calm and not to lose hope or surrender to despondency or self-help, ”as its lawyers are upbeat in obtaining justice at the Supreme Court”.

“This is more so as the tribunal itself admitted that there are several errors in the judgment.”

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