Presidential election: Supreme court fixes date for hearing of Atiku, PDP’s appeal suit

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The Supreme Court has fixed October 30, 2019, for the commencement of the hearing of appeal suit filed by the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the 2019 general elections, Atiku Abubakar, challenging the judgment of the presidential election tribunal, which affirmed the election of President Muhammadu Buhari.

This was made known on PDP’s Official Twitter page of Sunday.

The tweet reads, “Breaking News! The Supreme Court of Nigeria has scheduled to hear the Appeal of the @OfficialPDPNig and @atiku / @PeterObi, arising from the judgment of the Appeal Court, on Wednesday, October 30, 2019. It’s time to #RescueNigeria.”

They are challenging the judgment of the presidential election tribunal, which affirmed the election of President Muhammadu Buhari. 

Atiku and PDP filed the appeal on five grounds.

They alleged that the panel of the presidential election tribunal erred in law “when they relied on ‘overall interest of justice’, to hold that the 2nd Respondent’s Exhibits R1 to R26, P85, and P86 were properly admitted in evidence.”

They also alleged among other reasons that the tribunal erred in law “when they held thus: “My firm view is that Section 76 of the Electoral Act is clearly inapplicable to the issues under consideration. The form referred to are the form to be used in the conduct of the election as FORM CF001 had been taken care of in Section 31 of the Electoral Act and the said FORM CF001 is tied to the steps laid down in the said Section 31 of the Electoral Act.

“More importantly, the law is firmly settled that a candidate is not required by the Constitution or the Electoral Act to attach his certificates to FORM CF001 before the candidate can be considered or adjudged to have the requisite educational qualifications to contest the election.”

Atiku and PDP also alleged that the tribunal erred in law, when they held thus: “There was/is no pleadings in the Petition to the effect that 2nd Respondent’s failure to attach his certificates to Form CF001 amounts to lack of educational qualification to contest the election.

“In other words, the issue of failure to attach certificates which have been flogged throughout the length and breadth of the Petitioners Address (es) in Reply to 1st, 2nd and 3rd Respondents final written address is not the case of the Petitioner in the pleadings. No issue was joined on nonproduction of certificates or failure to attach them as an infraction of section 131, 137 and 138 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 as amended.

“All submissions about the failure to produce certificates or attach same to CF001 is hereby discountenanced. Even if it can be said that the submissions made are in tandem with the Petitioners Pleadings on issues 1 and 2 the fact remains that none of the facts pleaded were proved or established as required by law.”

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