Figures released by the headquarters of Nigeria’s Court of Appeal in Abuja showed on Thursday that 736 election petitions have been filed to challenge the outcome of the 2019 general elections, including the presidential election, at various states and levels.
The Court of Appeal is the coordinating secretariat for all election petition affairs, including the selection of judges participating in the election tribunals across the country.
The data released by the office of the Chief Registrar, Election Petitions Tribunal, Court of Appeal, Mrs. Rabi Abdulazeez, showed that four petitions were filed to challenge the All Progressives Congress and President Muhammadu Buhari’s victory at the February 23, 2019 poll.
It also showed that the senatorial elections, held in only 109 senatorial districts, had attracted 207 election petitions, almost doubling the number of districts where the polls held.
The House of Representatives elections conducted in 360 federal constituencies had given rise to 101 petitions.
Giving a breakdown of petitions so far filed as of April 4, 2019, the data released by the Information Officer of the Court of Appeal, Saadatu Musa Kachalla, stated:
House of Representatives elections: 101
Senatorial elections: 207
Governorship elections: 101
State House of Assembly election: 381
Presidential election: 4.
Copies of the petition were on display at the premises of the Court of Appeal in Abuja, venue of the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal.
The petition filed by the Peoples Democratic Party and its candidate, Atiku Abubakar, on March 18, was marked CA/PEPC/002/2019.
Another of the petitions was filed on March 7 by Hope Democratic Party and its National Chairman/presidential candidate, Ambrose Owuru.
The other petition with number CA/PEPC/004/2019 filed on March 19, was by 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. (Punch)