The Presidential Election Petition Tribunal has declared the All Progressives Congress, APC’s petition challenging Mr. Peter Obi’s membership of the Labour Party (LP) as incompetent. Justice Abba says membership in a political party is an internal affair.
The Tribunal also touched on the issue of non-joinder of Atiku Abubakar of the people’s Democratic Party (PDP), who came second and wondered how Obi & LP’s petition could be effectively determined without joining the candidate who placed second in the polls
LP’s Widespread Irregularities Claim Generic – Court
While highlighting a claim by the respondents that Obi’s petition only alleged that there were widespread irregularities without giving the particulars and the polling units.
Justice Abba Mohammed holds that 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 him, the petitioners only made generic allegations.
“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, the Tribunal added.
The court said the petitioners did not prove the particular polling unit where the election did not take place nor did they specify particulars of polling units where there are alleged complainants of irregularities.
“It was only in one instance that figures were given of alleged suppressed votes and we all know that elections are about figures,” it said.
“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….”