Some details of the petition filed on Monday by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its presidential candidate in the February 23 election, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, to challenge the victory of President Muhammadu Buhari and his All Progressives Congress, emerged on Tuesday.
The petition, which sought to rely on 50 sets of documents, was filed before the Presidential Election Petitions Tribunal in Abuja against the Independent National Electoral Commission, Buhari and the APC as the first to the third respondents, respectively.
INEC had on February 27, 2019 declared that Buhari won the election with 15,191,847 votes to defeat Atiku, whom it said polled 11,262,978 votes.
But the petitioners stated in their 139-page petition that “from the data in the 1st respondent’s (INEC’s) server…the true, actual and correct results” from “state to state computation” showed that Atiku polled a total of 18,356,732 votes to defeat Buhari whom they said scored 16,741,430 votes.
They said the results were the total votes scored by the candidates in 35 states and the Federal Capital Territory Abuja, as there was “no report on sever” about the results from Rivers State as of February 25, 2019.
By this, Atiku claims to have defeated Buhari with 1,615,302 votes.
One of the five grounds of the petition also tends to resuscitate the allegation that Buhari was not qualified to run for the office of the President on the grounds that he did not possess the constitutional minimum qualification of a school certificate.
The five grounds of the petition read, “The 2nd respondent (Buhari) was not duly elected by the majority of lawful votes cast at the election.
“The election of the 2nd respondent is invalid by reason of corrupt practices.
The Madness Called "Nigeria Decides 2019"
The horrible trojan of war called Nigeria National/State Election 2019, has really brought to limelight, lots of insanity and bloody involvement of the Nigerian Armed Forces. Instead of confining strictly to their constitutional duties of defending the territorial integrity of the country, securing lives and properties of the citizens, they shamelessly got involved in the decision of leadership and taking over the duties of the police in a supposedly pure civilian/democratic exercise. There is absolutely no reason pretending that Nigeria understands what the mandate of the people is, neither does she have a grasp of civilized democratic norms inherent in electoral processes.
"Nigeria Decides 2019", was more like a declaration of war between the political class and the poor masses, while military brutality aptly defined the dangerous democratic experiment that Nigeria is grappling with. It is no more a difficult task differentiating military regime from democracy in the country. This hinges on the unabated despotic militarisation targeted against the opposition politicians. Although there has been a long existence of impunity in the administration of Nigeria by her rulers but democracy in the present dispensation, is programmed to suffer worst setbacks under the regime of APC (All Progressive Congress) atrocious government.
That which has over the years, never been witnessed has eventually happened. The lives of ordinary citizens were recklessly snuffed out of them by the same crop of individuals that swore to an oath of office, to protect them. The Nigerian army that could not courageously confront the firepower of insurgency with it's arsenals, suddenly turned around to slaughter quite a number of defenseless, armless citizens in the bid to hijack the democratic mandate of the people. Note that both the officials of the so-called Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and election observers, suffered various degrees of casualties and intimidation while trying to checkmate the activities of the electorates.
While the combined security forces of Nigeria took over the election process, molesting and killing civilians in their desperation to ensure victory for the ruling political party, it remains grossly unconstitutional for the Nigerian army to participate in any form of election. There is no permission under any known law in the country empowering them to intimidate nor suppress harmless, armless and law abiding citizens in an electoral process, in other to drown the voice or mandate of the people.
Written by Moses Agbo
Edited by Peter Oshagwu
For Family Writers Press