Presidential Election Tribunal: All Eyes On The Judiciary

By Daily Sports Nigeria on May 8, 2023

Nigerians are still in high expectations of the outcome of Presidential Election as it starts sitting in Abuja today.

All eyes are on the Court presently. All attention has been shifted to the Presidential Election Tribunal.

The arrogance with which APC tells her aggrieved opponents to “go to Court” has since brought the genuineness of the supposedly reference centre to question in other climes.

Many believe that the Courts have been on their edge because of the way and manner APC attack dogs of Bola Tinubu tell anybody that dare say that the February 25, Presidential election was rigged in favour of APC by Mahmood Yakubu’s INEC.

Many prominent Nigerians and international observers who were in Nigeria for the poll have in one fora or the other voiced their dismay on the February 25 Presidential election. Therefore even the World focus on Nigeria and the extent our learned Judges would go about handling this naughty issue at hand.  Many issues characterised the conduct of 2023 election where INEC failed to follow it’s laid down electoral guidelines. Such anomaly sadly put Mahood Yakubu and his INEC as mere rubber stamp readily in the hands of APC that appointed them.

Since the conduct of the controversial February 25, Presidential poll the country has been at the cross roads. The heat has been on between those who said their mandate was stolen by Bola Tinubu and his ruling APC.  Meanwhile, Tinubu boys led by Bayo Ononuga have been restless attacking anything attackable. You heard Festus Keyaemo the other day on the legitimate and unbiased view expressed by Cardinal Emeritus of Abuja, John Onoyakun. The eminent citizen and servant of God was apt on his submissions concerning the election result which was widely described as high flawed. “I am waiting for them to tell me who won the February, 25th Presidential election.”

Nigerians and other unsuspecting  people of the globe were taken aback on how Festus Keyamo, supposedly SAN attacked Cardinal Emeritus on his candid position on the 2023 Presidential election and his unflinching faith in the Nigerian Judiciary to dutifully and impartially ensure it dispense justice in accordance with the law. Typical of Festus and his likes since after the highly disputed Presidential election acting centrally as people afraid of their shadows unjustly haul attacks on anybody who failed to see the Presidential election from their angle and thought.

Now that the Appeal Court which acts as the Presidential election tribunal starts sitting today and APC has intensified its deliberate distractions and antics, one believes that the Judges would be strictly focused and never allow the great hope the majority of Nigerians that chose their President on February 25, Presidential election that was deliberately mismanaged by Mahmood and his INEC would get back their acclaimed “stolen mandate.”

I don’t want to believe that Nigerians cannot get things rightly done anytime they want to, we have everything we need to get things done the right way but the problem is the will power to shun corruption. Records have shown that Nigerians excel in all facets of enterprise across the globe, how come are different here? Anybody who followed the conduct of the last elections saw corruption display everywhere without caution. Starting from the time of registration of voters, where a person will be denied registration or collection of voters’ card because he/she is of a particular tribe or religion and residing in a certain state. Millions of voters’ cards were found dumped in buses, gutter, residential places and INEC offices to deny such people from voting.  All these were in public domain, government was aware, INEC was aware, the law enforcement agents were aware but nothing was done, the poor masses were helpless.


During elections, all sorts of atrocities were committed because Bola Tinubu charged his supporters and APC stakeholders to make sure they used all crook means to hijack, snatch and run away with the ballot boxes despite the BIVAs which was introduced to stop ballot snatching.  People were shot dead, maimed, and detained to stop them from voting. Even masquerades and charms were on display to scare voters away.  All these were in the public domain with the help of technology, which made people to video and sent as it happened.  

The people were determined to change the government of APC because it did not bring anything to the table since almost eight years of their administration, instead in took Nigeria back to the era before the civil war.  What improvement has APC brought to Nigeria that makes them deserve another term is the big question. Look at the huge debt handing on the country neck without anything meaningful infrastructure to show for it. Corruption has worsened, insecurity, the economy is nothing to write home about, hunger is everywhere brought about by herdsmen who kill farmers and occupy their farm lands to feed their cows. How can Nigerians close their eyes and allow this insensitivity to go without detriment to those who inflicted this injury on us all?

The fireworks will as usual bring out the best in the legal heavy weights each of the political parties hired to argue their cases home. Two major observations can readily be spotted in this year’s Presidential election tribunal hearing.  One, there are three political parties laying claim to victory and the second being for the first time, INEC is  also challenging the opposing political parties paying walloping multi- millions of Naira to that effect.

That aspect is novel to our electoral system even from the first republic. The part of fund released to INEC for seamless conduct of elections is being channeled towards defending its illegality.  That is another irony into this year’s so called election Mahmood and his INEC posted for Nigerians. That alone, INEC supposed to stand trial for openly throwing its weight behind a particular political party as against its Oath of office.

The electoral body from all indications is not supposed to hire lawyers to defend the anomaly it forced on Nigerians. Come to think of it, what will INEC be telling the Court that prevented it from transmitting the result from polling booth to its server. What will it twist that prompted it declare a candidate that did not score the constitutionally stated section that a Presidential candidate would only be declared a winner when it won 25% of votes in the Federal Capital, Abuja. As usual we expect many distortions from a supposedly impartial electoral umpire, “the Nigerian factor” issue.

The present circumstance points to the fact that only the judiciary has the ace to reverse this lawlessness INEC hung on Nigeria’s neck since February when it announced the infamous election result that put Bola Tinubu fraudulently ahead of PDP’s Atiku Abubakar and LP’s Peter Obi.

It is instructive to note here that since that deliberate huge error by INEC, Nigeria has never known peace. Tension, more suspicion rules the land. There has been no jubilation of any kind that Tinubu won an election even right in his geo-political zone of South West, except from those who will eventually share the plunder with him if he is sworn into office. 

As things presently stands, only a resolute and resounding judgment from the Court can save this ticklish but  thick cloud currently hovering all over the nooks and crannies.  To be honest with you, it is tall order from the citizenry to the Court. Therefore, the Presidential election tribunal has a lot on its shoulders. The judgment must reflect the overall yields. APC is under intense pressure now.

We will keep our fingers crossed and watch closely too. As usual there has been accusation and counter accusations form opposing political parties on the move by APC to buy off the judges. But let the truth be told. Nigerians need servant leader definitely not like the present President who never worked his talks. Mahammadu Buhari as lame duck President for near eight years, can now afford Bola Tinubu who many allegations are hanging on his neck including having paid fine for criminal office (drug trafficking in USA) as parting gift using INEC to foist on Nigerians.

Nigeria does not need yet another political disorder. The judiciary is on the eye of the storm. Keep shooting had till next week, meanwhile we wait.   


Source Punch Ng

Posted May 8, 2023


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