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Breaking: PDP petitions CJN over judgments delivered by Plateau tribunal

From Jude Owuamanam, Jos

Plateau State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has petitioned the Chief Justice of Nigeria and Chairman of the National Judicial Council, Justice Kayode Ariwola, over the judgments delivered by the Justice Mohammed Tukur-led National Assembly Election Petitions tribunal sitting in Jos.

The party accused the three justices of the panel deliberate perversion of justice and conspiracy to remove its elected candidates into the legislative houses.

The election tribunal in Plateau was split into two, one led by Justice Tukur and the other led by Justice Rotimi Williams, to enable the tribunal dispense with the number of petitions arising from the February 25 and March 18, 2023 general elections.

But while the Williams-led tribunal has been favourable to the PDP, all the judgments given by Tukur had been against the party.

The crux of their judgements was whether PDP had valid structures to have enabled the party to sponsor candidates for the election.

Tukur in all his rulings had maintained that the party had no structure and so have no right to sponsor any candidate, but Justice Williams thought otherwise.

However in the petition entitled, ‘Petitions against Justice B. M Tukur, Hon Justice Omeka Elekwa and Hon Justice O. A. Adetunjoye for deliberate perversion of justice and conspiracy to remove candidates of our party elected into parliament’ the party alleged bias on the part of the Tukur-led tribunal.

The statement signed by the State Chairman, Mr. Chris Hassan and Secretary, John Alan’s, said, “The undersigned are the chairman and secretary respectively of the plateau state chapter of PDP and we bring this petition on behalf of the plateau state chapter of PDP.

“Our party, the PDP sponsored candidates to various parliamentary positions in the national and state assembly elections held in nigeria on february 25, 2023 and march 18, 2023.

“Our party was victorious in 2 out of the 3 senate seats, four out of the 6 house of representatives positions and 15 out of the 24 house of assembly positions according to the returns made by the Independent National Electoral commission.

Persons and parties who lost the election to our party filed petitions before the national and state assembly election tribunal on the basis that our party did not score majority of the lawful votes at the election, that there was non compliance with the order of Justice S P Gang of Plateau State High Court delivered on November 26, 2020 which ordered the party to conduct ward congresses.

The party expressed dismay that the second tribunal had dismissed the plea of the petitioners, Justice Tukur and his brother judges had found merit in the petitions.

Sunday Sun gathered that the tribunal had so upturned one out of the two senatorial seats won by PDP, all the four members of the House of Representatives and six out of the 15 seats won by PDP in the State House of Assembly.