Election petitions rise to 766, as 77 tribunal panels prepare to begin hearing
NEWS DIGEST–The number of election petitions challenging various results of the 2019 general elections has risen from its 736 status as of April 4, to 766, the Court of Appeal headquarters in Abuja said on Tuesday.
The Deputy Chief Registrar, Election Petition Tribunal, Court of Appeal, Mrs Rabi Abdulazeez, said the new figure of 766 was the number of the petitions filed as of April 16.
She added that 77 election petitions tribunal panels have been set up by the President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Zainab Bulkachuwa, to hear the matters.
The data released by Abdulazeez on Tuesday showed that the number of presidential election petitions remained four in number as it was in the earlier summary of records made public on April 4.
The number of House of Representatives election disputes has also remained 101.
But the senatorial election petitions have increased by two – from the April 4 status of 205 to 207 as of April 16.
The breakdown of the petitions filed so far as released by the Court of Appeal on Tuesday is as follows:
“House of Representatives election – 101;
“Senate – 205;
“Governorship – 54;
“State House of Assembly – 402;
“Presidential – 4.”
The four presidential election petitions were filed to challenge the victory of President Muhammadu Buhari and his party, the All Progressives Congress at the April 23 poll.
They included the one filed on March 18 by the Peoples Democratic Party and its candidate, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar and marked CA/PEPC/002/2019.
Another of the petitions was filed on March 7, by Hope Democratic Party and its National Chairman and presidential candidate, Chief Ambrose Owuru.
The other petition with number CA/PEPC/004/2019 filed on March 19, was by Pastor Aminchi Habu and his party, the Peoples Democratic Movement.
The fourth petition was by Geff Ojinika and Coalition for Change, who both contended that “the election was vitiated by substantial non-compliance with mandatory statutory provisions which irregularity substantially affected the election such that the 1st respondent (Buhari) was not entitled to be returned as the winner of the presidential election”.
The petitioners all joined INEC, Buhari and the APC as the respondents.
But the Coalition for Change and Ojinika added Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo to their list of respondents.