The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the February 23, 2019 rescheduled presidential election and his party has finally filed a petition challenging the declaration of President Muhammadu Buhari as winner of the poll.
Buhari, with a margin of 3,928,869, was declared winner of the 2019 presidential election by the National Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
Atiku and his party are challenging the election of Buhari and his party, the All Progressives Congress (APC) on the grounds of alleged massive riggings, malpractices and non compliance substantially with the electoral laws.
In the petition filed last night, Atiku and the PDP are praying that they be declared winner of the February 23, 2019 presidential election.
In the alternative, the two petitioners prayed the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal (PEPT) to nullify the poll and order for a fresh election that will be conducted in lines with the provisions of the electoral laws.
Respondents in the suit are the APC, President Buhari and INEC.
Although a copy of the petition cannot be obtained at the filing of the report, the National Legal Adviser of the PDP Emmanuel Enoidem, confirmed to journalists at the Court of Appeal, where the PEPT us sitting that the petition has been filled.
Enoidem said that the PDP and its presidential candidate have already assembled a powerful legal team, comprising 20 Senior Advocates of Nigeria (SANs) and other retinue of lawyers who will establish the fact of the petition.
He disclosed that over 400 witnesses have been assembled to testify during the hearing of the petition.
On the order earlier granted to Atiku to inspect materials used in the conduct of the presidential election by the electoral body, he said that the party is using the report of the party’s polling agents across the country to establish facts of the petition.
A member of the legal team, Chief Mike Ozekhome (SAN) while confirming the filing of the petition by Atiku and his party, said, “the petition was solid, strong and unassailable”, adding that “the true owner and keeper of the people’s mandate would soon be declared”.
Ozekhome, however lamented the non cooperative attitude of INEC to the petitioners.
According to the results of the election released by INEC, Buhari polled 15,191,847 votes to defeat Atiku, who got 11,262,978 votes.