A live TV broadcast of the tribunal’s decision on Tinubu’s election victory
On Wednesday, September 6, 2023, the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal (PEPT) will finally make a decision about the validity of President Bola Tinubu’s election.
The Post-Election Controversy and Tribunal Proceedings in Nigeria
A live TV broadcast of the tribunal’s decision on Tinubu’s election victory. In the aftermath of the hotly debated February elections in Nigeria, various opposition leaders have taken their grievances to the tribunal. Notably, Peoples Democratic Party’s Atiku Abubakar and Labour Party’s Peter Obi, who were the runners-up, are challenging the victory of the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate, Tinubu.
Channels TV’s Coverage and Anticipation
Channels TV’s report indicates heightened public interest in the matter, with the panel set to deliver its long-awaited judgment soon. All the contending parties have presented their final arguments, and the nation now waits with bated breath for the decision. The registrar of the Court of Appeal, Umar Bangari, has opened up the proceedings to live television broadcast, emphasizing the significance of this political event.
Questions Surrounding Tinubu’s Victory
Tinubu’s victory was officially declared by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on February 25. However, this announcement has been ensnared in controversy. His legitimacy as the elected leader was questioned due to issues with the electronic transfer of results from voting booths. These complications cast a shadow of doubt over the entire electoral process.
Petitions and Challenges Post-Election
The weeks following the election were tumultuous. Five different political parties, with or without the support of their candidates, approached the tribunal with their petitions. Although the Action Alliance (AA) and Action People’s Party (APP) eventually withdrew their challenges, the Allied People’s Movement (APM) remains steadfast in its pursuit of justice alongside the PDP and LP. They await the tribunal’s decision with eagerness.
The Specific Allegations
Peter Obi’s petition delves into the past, suggesting that due to a drug prosecution in the United States, Tinubu was not even eligible to run. Highlighting a 1993 incident where Tinubu forfeited a substantial amount of money to the US authorities, linking it to drug trafficking, the petition raises questions about his political eligibility. Moreover, Obi asserts that Tinubu’s failure to secure a minimum of 25% votes in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) clearly contravenes the constitution, rendering his victory null and void.
Atiku Abubakar, on the other hand, has presented a different angle of challenge. He claims that Tinubu’s undisclosed possession of a Guinean passport, which only came to light post his electoral win, is a clear ground for disqualification. Both opposition leaders, Abubakar and Obi, have made bold requests to the panel: they either want to be declared as the legitimate winners or they demand a fresh election, preferably without Tinubu’s involvement.
The Political Landscape Amidst Legal Wrangling
Despite these allegations and legal proceedings, Tinubu’s political journey has seen no significant disruption. He was inaugurated as Nigeria’s president on May 29, succeeding Muhammadu Buhari, his party mate, who served for eight years. As the lawsuits continue, the country’s political stability and the credibility of its democratic processes are under scrutiny.