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HomePoliticsCourt adjourns Obi's petition against Tinubu, as LP factions clash at Tribunal

Court adjourns Obi’s petition against Tinubu, as LP factions clash at Tribunal

Court adjourns Obi's petition against Tinubu, as LP factions clash at Tribunal

Court adjourns Obi’s petition against Tinubu, as LP factions clash at Tribunal

The Presidential Election Petition Tribunal in Abuja on Wednesday adjourned to Friday, May 19, for a continuation of pre-hearing in the petition by Peter Obi, the 2023 Labour Party (LP) presidential candidate, against the President-elect, Bola Tinubu.

The court, headed by Justice Haruna Tsammani, fixed the date after the failure of parties in the petition to agree on documents, among other reasons.

Recall that the Tribunal had last week adjourned the pre-hearing session on Obi and the LP’s petition till May 17 at the instance of the petitioners.

But on Wednesday, the justices arrived to commence the day’s proceedings and also refused to acknowledge the party’s representation aside from Obi as LP National Chairman, Julius Abure, was in court, and the party’s factional chairman, Lamidi Apapa, was also present.

A wild drama ensued between both camps of the LP on which group should be in court.
Trouble started when Lamidi Apapa, factional chairman of the party, walked into the court premises alongside some of his supporters.

Apapa, who is locked in a battle with Julius Abure, suspended chairman of the party, had arrived the court for the case of a petition which Peter Obi, Presidential Candidate of the party, filed against the victory of President-elect Bola Tinubu.

He made attempted to sit where Labour Party officials were and a shouting match ensued.

Who are you?” a party official asked Apapa, who fired back saying, “You don’t know me? Look at the way you are talking, who are you too?”

As the argument continued, Apapa raised his voice, saying, “Get up, you can not sit down here!”

Secretary of the Presidential election court, Josephine Ekperobe, quickly moved in to ensue normalcy.

Later when the Labour Party matter was called, Obi and the party’s Women Leader, Dudu Manoga, introduced themselves on the record of the court.

But when Apapa stood up to introduce himself as the National Chairman, the presiding justice of the court, Justice Haruna Tsammani, requested him to stop the introduction as the court would not recognise the ‘National Chairman’ on record.

Abure, who sat next to Obi, did not, however, attempt to introduce himself.

Apapa had earlier vowed to take control of the party and to withdraw the petition and motions before the court ahead of the sitting following the ruling of an FCT High Court sustaining Abure’s suspension. The LP has since appealed the ruling.

However, the Tribunal refused to take an appearance for the LP as the acting National Chairman of the party, Lamidi Apapa, and the National Women’s Leader of the party, Dudu Manugu, tried to make an appearance for LP when the petition was called.

Justice Haruna Tsamani noted that if two persons are making an appearance for LP, they will not be put on record.
During Wednesday’s sitting, the LP’s lawyers, the lawyers to Bola Tinubu, the APC and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) are expected to show the extent of their harmonisation of non-contentious issues and motions to be relied upon during the main hearing.

 

 

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