The Presidential Election Petition Court,PEPC, on Monday summarily dismissed the election petition filed by Action Alliance ,AA, challenging the election of President -Elect Ahmed Bola Tinubu.
Presiding Justice of the five man panel, Justice Haruna Simon Tsammani dismissed AA,s petition as the petitioners’ lawyer Oba Maduabuchi SAN, withdrew the petition.
“Consequently, upon the petitioners discontinuance of this petition and the fact that there is no objections to it, this petition is hereby dismissed”, the Court held.
The had listed AA petition as the first in the cause list. But it was mentioned, the petitioner lawyer, Oba Maduabuchi,SAN, announced his appearance for the petitioner. Another lawyer Malachy Nwaekpe made an attempt to announce appearance for same political party.
On enquiry from the presiding Justice, Nwaekpe said that the hearing of the application dated May 3 ,2023 will resolve the dispute on who is representing AA because the petitioners have not instructed Maduabuchi to file the petition.
In response Maduabuchi , SAN, informed the panel that he did not want to drag the court into AA internal leadership dispute that is before the Court of Appeal .
He said that in any case, he had filed an application to withdraw the petition on the instruction of his clients. He prayed the court to dismiss the election petition.
Counsel for the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, Abubakar Mahmoud SAN, and other lawyers in the matter: Chief Wole Olanipekun SAN, for Tinubu and Chief Lateef Fagbemi SAN did not object to the withdrawal.
Meanwhile, the PEPC has adjourned the hearing of Peter Obi and Labour Party petition till Wednesday,May 10, 2023 .
When the petition was mentioned on Monday, the lead counsel in the matter
Livy Uzoukwu SAN identified all the processes the petitioners had filed and served on respondents.
The lead counsel also identified all the responses the team has received from the respondents.
Abubakar Mahmoud SAN, the lead counsel for the Independent National Electoral Commission ,INEC, also identified all the processes his team has received and filed in respect of the petition.
Similar process of identification of court processes that were filed and received from the petitioners were also conducted by Lateef Fagbemi SAN lawyer for All Progressives Congress APC, and Chief Wole Olanipekun SAN the lawyer for Ahmed Bola Tinubu.
In a brief ruling the Presiding Justice, Tsammani ordered the lawyers in the matter to meet and identify what they would object and those that they agreed on, in order to make the hearing easy.
He therefore adjourned the petition to Wednesday for continuation of pre-hearing session.
Earlier, on Monday the PEPC had shifted pre-hearing session on Peoples Democratic Party,PDP and Atiku Abubakar’s petition to Tuesday, May 9, 2023. Also shifted to Tuesday is the pre hearing session on the petition filed by Allied Peoples Movement,APM.