The Presidential Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Abuja on Wednesday adjourned the pre-hearing in the petition by presidential candidate of the Labour Party (LP), Peter Obi against the President-Elect, Bola Tinubu to Friday, May 19.
LP National Chairman, Julius Abure was also in court on Wednesday. Drama had ensued when the party’s factional chairman, Lamidi Apapa requested to seat at the plaintiff’s gallery.
Apapa made attempts to occupy the seat reserved for Abure but was resisted.
The justices refused to acknowledge the representation of the party aside from Obi.
When the case was called, Obi announced appearance for himself and Dudu Manuga, national woman leader of the party, announced appearance for the party but was interrupted by Apapa.
Consequently, Tribunal refused to take an appearance for the LP.
Justice Haruna Tsamani noted that if two persons are making an appearance for the party, they will not be put on record.
At the resumed hearing, counsel for Labour Party, Livy Uzoukwu informed the court that the scheduled meeting to agree on documents to be tendered for hearing hasn’t yielded much results as the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has only made available 30% of the documents required from them.
He added that this is contrary to commitment by the INEC Chairman, Mahmoud Yakubu, that all documents required shall be made available.
He further added that the party is yet to get documents with respect to Rivers State where he said the Resident Electoral Commissioner said there are no forms EC8A available to be given but is yet to put that in writing despite request to do so.
Counsel for INEC, Abubakar Mahmoud, however, said he is taken aback by the allegations of the counsel for the Labour party as they they did not show up for the meeting as agreed, and walked out of the rescheduled meeting.
He stated that Labour Party was provided with some documents, but refused to collect it until it was complete.
Abubakar added that the documents for Rivers and Sokoto states, where indeed provided, but the Labour Party refused to pay the sum of 1.5million naira for Sokoto State, and the Form EC8A for Rivers State, have not been given to them.
Ifunanya Ikueze is an Engineer, Safety Professional, Writer, Investor, Entrepreneur and Educator.