The legal moves to invalidate the declaration of former Lagos State Governor, Senator Ahmed Bola Tinubu, as winner of the February 25, presidential election has commenced at the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal (PEPT), Abuja.
Meanwhile, the PEPT has granted the ex parte applications brought before it by presidential candidates of the Peoples Democratic Party and Labour Party, Atiku Abubakar and Peter Obi, respectively to allow them inspect the materials used by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) for the conduct of the election.
This is a prerequisite step for the proper filing of their respective election petitions against the outcome of the presidential election.
The two aggrieved politicians, in their separate ex parte motions filed by their counsels, sought the permission of the tribunal located at the Abuja Division of the Court of Appeal to inspect the electoral materials.
Counsel to Atiku Abubakar of the PDP, Adedamola Faloku, prayed the Court to grant the ex parte application brought before it, pursuant to Section 146 (1) of the Electoral Act 2022, Paragraph 47 (1, 2 &3) of the first Schedule of the Electoral Act of 2022 and under the inherent jurisdiction of the Court as referenced by Section 6 (6) A & B of the 1999 Constitution.
The application sought seven prayers predicated on six grounds. The counsel also informed the court that a schedule of the documents to interrogate the respondent (INEC) was also contained in the application, which is an 18-paragraph application supported by a 12-paragraph affidavit.
He thereafter adopted all the averments contained in the affidavit, and urged the court to grant the application.
The presiding justice, Hon. Justice Joseph Ikyegh, granted the application of the applicants.
The tribunal equally heard and granted the ex parte application by Mr. Obi on the same subject matter.
His counsel, Alex Ejeseme, SAN, filed the motion pursuant to Section 86 (1) of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 as amended Section 146 of the Electoral Act 2022 and paragraphs 47 (1 and 54) of the first Schedule of the Electoral Act 2022 under the inherent jurisdiction of the court.
The application brought before the court by Mr. Obi prayed for six reliefs on six grounds in support of the application.
Ejeseme also informed the court that they had deposed a 15-paragraph affidavit and they relied on all the averments in their application urging the court to grant the application.