The Presidential Election Petition Tribunal (PEPT) has laid to rest the controversy over winning 25 percent of gites cast in the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, as a requirement for winning the presidential election in Nigeria.
The PEPT said that scoring 25 per cent was not constitutionally obligatory in the process of becoming president of Nigeria.
The Justice Tsammani-led panel said the voters in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Abuja were equal to every other voter in the states in Nigeria, hence, Abuja had no special status.
Recall that the Labour Party (LP) and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) presidential candidates submitted that winning 25% of the FCT votes, in addition to meeting other requirements, was a necessary requirement of being declared winner in a presidential election.
The PEPT had earlier quashed the case of massive rigging alleged by Obi in favour of Tinubu.
It said that the Labour Party’s petition, alleging widespread poll irregularities in the February 25, 2023 election that brought in President Bola Tinubu was generic and not specific and therefore was unproven.
The court said LP failed to prove the particular polling units where the elections did not take place and also did not specify particulars of polling units where there are alleged complainants of irregularities.
Delivering judgment, Justice Abba Mohammed, said: ”In a presidential election held in 176,866 polling units in 774 Local Government Areas, it would be improper not to specify where there were irregularities.”
According to Justice Mohammed, the petitioners only made generic allegations, as they did not prove the particular polling units where the election did not take place nor did they specify particulars of polling units where there are alleged complainants of irregularities.
“Pleading must set out material facts and particulars. In the instant petition, there was no effort to prove specific allegations, particulars of complaints,” said the Tribunal.
“The law is clear that where someone alleges irregularities in a particular polling unit, such person must prove the particular irregularities in that polling unit before that petition can succeed.
“It was only in one instance that figures were given of alleged suppressed votes and we all know that elections are about figures.
“LP alleged that INEC reduced their scores and added it to APC votes but failed to supply particulars of what they actually scored before the said reductions, neither did they supply the polling units where it happened,” the Tribunal added.
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