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Atiku confident of victory, as tribunal proceedings ends, sets date for judgement



The Presidential Election Petition Court has reserved judgement in the petition filed by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)’s presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, against the February 25 election victory of President Bola Tinubu of the All Progressives Congress (APC).

The five-man panel led by Justice Haruna Tsammani, reserved judgement to a date to be communicated to the parties.

Atiku, Nigeria’s Vice-President between May 1999 and May 2007, who was physically present in court today (Tuesday), alongside the PDP as well as Labour Party (LP) and its flag bearer, Peter Obi, are praying for the nullification of Tinubu’s victory in the February 25 poll, claiming individually to have won the election.

Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), which is defending the credibility of the election, in its own defence filed by Abubakar Mahmoud, its lawyer said it would amount to absurdity for the Tribunal to accept the argument of Atiku that one must secure 25 per cent of votes in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) to emerge winner of a presidential election, arguing that Section 134 of the Constitution, die not make the enclave to enjoy a special status.

He added that it would amount to absurdity for residents of the FCT to be deemed as being more special than other Nigerians elsewhere who voted during the keenly contested election.

On Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) and INEC Result Viewing portal (IREV), Mahmoud argued that the evidence before the court showed that all the information generated by the BVAS in relation to transmission of results were stored in the Amazon Web Services (AWS) and it was the most secured and publicly available cloud service in the world.

He held that there was a test of vulnerability and application of the AWS.
He further held that INEC showed good intention to make the election credible as manifested by the evidence before the court.

Mahmoud submitted that the major plank of the petitioners’ case is non-compliance with the electoral act, regulations and guidelines.

On his part, the counsel for Tinubu and his vice, Kashim Shettima, Wole Olanikpekun, described the petitioners as meddlesome interloper.

He held that uploading of results to the IREV, either manually or electronically, played no role in the election process. He added that collation was physical and also manual.

Citing pages 10-11 of their address, he drew the attention of the court to the difference between transfer and transmit, the vertical, horizontal and the continuous use of the word or by the petitioner.

On the FCT, Olanikpekun held that the FCT is the 37th state in Nigeria for the purpose of the presidential election.

He added that the President won one quarter of the votes in two-third of the FCT.
On his part, counsel for the APC, Lateef Fagbemi, also prayed the court to dismiss the petition on the grounds that all the points raised in the petition has been ruled on by other court.

On the issue of 25% in Abuja, he said treating Abuja specially would be undue privilege, discrimination and elevation of a state, above others.

On the issue of election results, he noted that the petitioners did not prove that election did not hold in any area, neither did they prove that the results were proported as their witnesses did not disagree with the results of the election, as the only complain they had was the uploading of results.

On the issue of forfeiture, he noted that it was a civil forfeiture not a criminal one.

However, Atiku’s counsel, Chris Uche, said the issue of double nomination wasn’t raised.

On the issue of transmission, he added that there is a new regime in the Electoral Act and the essence of the innovation was to enhance transparency of collation and integrity of results declared.

He contended that INEC had a choice and option which they exercised.
Uche further added that RW 1 admitted results in the National Assembly election were transmitted but that of the presidential poll was not.

He further insisted that there was no technical glitch but a deliberate hitch to create room for manipulation.

He wondered why INEC said it was only four hours they had a delay, while their witness admitted that results were uploaded till March 1, 2023.

He pointed out that the burden shifts to INEC to explain the substantiality of the non-compliance.

He accused INEC of carrying out a total shutdown to create room for manipulation.

On the issue of FCT, he said they have sought to create an additional state. No one is endowed with the competence to add what has already been.

He urged the court to adopt the current trend and allow all the petitions which they clearly proved.

The five-man panel led by Justice Haruna Tsammani subsequently reserved judgement to a date that will be communicated to the parties.


BREAKING: Mother of all strikes! D-Day, October 3! *Stockpile food, essentials – NLC, TUC   



The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC)) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) on Tuesday, announced midnight Tuesday, October 3 as the date for the commencement of total strike by their workers to get the Federal Government accede to their demands to end the current sufferings of their members and Nigerians at large.

The two labour centres representing the organised labour in Nigeria, which arrived at the decision after they had met separately at their local levels directed their affiliates to mobilise for protests from October 3, saying they took the decisions were approved at the meeting of the joint National Executive Council of the two unions on Tuesday, September 26, in Abuja.

Joe Ajaero, President of the NLC, speaking on behalf of his group, while urging Nigerians to stock their homes ahead the total strike, bemoaned the situation where the government had ignored the demands of the workers, saying it “substantially failed to meet its demands after the removal of fuel subsidy,” added that adding that the grace period given by the two labour centres had expired.

The organised labour, is demanding wage awards for public workers and a new minimum wage, apart from the removal of tax exemptions and allowances to public sector workers, provision of Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) buses, the release of modalities for the N70billion for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and immediate reversal of all anti-poor policies of the Federal Government.

The union, which on September 5th and 6th, the NLC embarked on a two-day warning strike which led to the partial crippling of economic activities in some states and gave the government a 21-day ultimatum to meet its demands, is also demanding a stop to the increase in public school fees, the release of the eight months withheld salaries of university teachers and workers as well as the increase in Value Added Tax (VAT).

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BREAKING: Total strike looms! *NLC, TUC, finally meet, agree on action



The Federal Government, may have finally lost the move to stop the impending strike by organised labour, or at least mitigate it by dividing its membership, following a meeting of the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC), hitherto in disagreement over the issue.

In fact, the two bodies representing the junior and senior workers in Nigeria are reportedly meeting currently to announce a statewide indefinite strike, a move coming about three weeks after the NLC held a warning strike on Tuesday, September 5, and Wednesday 6, 2023, without the TUC, which it explained was to call attention of the FG to the painful suffering of Nigerians, particularly workers.

However, indications, suggests that having agreed to come to an understanding in the interest of the working masses of Nigeria, both camps, having also met separately in their different local organs, decided to hold a joint press conference at 3 p.m. on Tuesday to announce an indefinite nationwide strike in response to the FG’s failure to address the suffering and other socioeconomic hardships caused by the removal of subsidies on Premium Motor, PMS, commonly known as petrol.

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Tinubu will shock Atiku and his gang – APC *Why meeting with Biden didn’t hold



Having met with Joe Biden, at a parley of the G20 group in India, it was unnecessary for President Bola Tinubu to hold another session with his US counterpart at the recent United Nation General Assembly (UNGA) in New York, the All Progressives Congress (APC), explained on Monday.

Felix Morka, spokesman of the party, in a statement, also explain other issues in a quick riposte to the attacks of Atiku Abubakar, presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) who claimed that the POTUS avoided Tinubu at UNGA because he did not want to be associated with the putrid stains trailing his Nigerian counterpart.

Morka, National Publicity Secretary of the party, also dismissed Atiku’s claims through his spokesman, Phrank Shaibu that fuel subsidy, which the Tinubu administration said it has jettisoned having dismissed it as a drain on the nation’s resources, had returned through the backdoor, saying the payment of the mark up in the pump price of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) by the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL), in August, was to ensure stability.

Hear him: ”Shaibu’s claim that fuel subsidy is back is not correct. The government’s intervention to ensure some measure of price stability and predictability does not amount to the return of the ruinous fuel subsidy of the recent past.

“Lifting the Visa ban on Nigerians by the United Arab Emirates (UAE) authorities should ordinarily make any well-meaning Nigerian happy. Diplomatic rapprochement between Nigeria and UAE authorities is ongoing and details of outcomes will soon be made public.

“The matter of the proposed meeting with United States of America President Joe Biden does not even require elaboration. Having met with President Tinubu on the sidelines of the G-20 Nations summit in India, another meeting with President Biden during the United Nation’s General Assembly (UNGA) had become unnecessary and was not even on President Tinubu’s schedule, contrary to preliminary indications on the matter.

“Nigeria is facing pressing challenges that require focused efforts and undivided attention. Issues such as economic recovery, security of lives and property, infrastructure development, and social welfare demand continuous, sustained and innovative efforts.

“President Tinubu is committed to ensuring an inclusive, honest, transparent and accountable governance system. We encourage citizens to actively participate in democratic processes, ventilate their views, and contribute constructively to national conversations. As the discerning people that we are, we remain confident that Nigerians will continue to differentiate between genuine, constructive and development-oriented criticisms and those driven by self-interest, mercenary considerations and disruptive political agenda.

“While we urge Nigerians to ignore purveyors of fake news and other inanities, it is obvious that Shaibu and his likes will stop at nothing in their desperation to distort facts and give oxygen to their politically knocked-out principal. But that can only worsen his infamy in the light of the President’s determined commitment and strides to improving the social and economic conditions for all Nigerians.

“The PDP and all its agents of misinformation should know by now that no amount of sleazy propaganda, muckraking, lies, half-truths, misrepresentations, misinformation or disinformation will confer the presidency of Nigeria on their candidate.

“Nigerians have freely chosen our party, the APC, and President Bola Tinubu, to continue to steer the ship of state. And the President is making good his campaign promises to deliver purposeful leadership to remake Nigeria, open the economy to rewarding investments, promote inclusive growth, create jobs, secure lives and property and renew hope for a vibrant future.”

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