Both President Muhammadu Buhari and his party, the All Progressives Congress, have filed their separate final addresses before the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal in Abuja, insisting that the petition by the Peoples Democratic Party and its presidential candidate, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, challenging their victory at the February 23, 2019 poll was doomed to fail.
In their separate final written addresses filed before the Justice Mohammed Garba-led tribunal on Wednesday, they urged the tribunal to dismiss the petition, which they contended was speculative and starved of evidence.
It is to be stated preliminarily that the instant election petition, as constituted from the outset, was doomed to fail as the averments and materials attached to the petition are grossly insufficient to sustain the petition apart from the incompetent grounds on which it was predicated,” APC’s lawyer, Lateef Fagbemi (SAN) stated in the final address seen by The PUNCH on Thursday.
Fagbemi urged the tribunal to “dismiss the petition without going into the merits of same as we have urged in the motions on notice filed on May 14 and May 15, 2019.”
Fagbemi added, “One significant flaw with the petition is that the allegations of the petitioners were to a large extent not tied to the units and wards in each local government area of each of the eleven states under challenge in the petition.”
Buhari’s lawyer, Chief Wole Olanipekun (SAN), whose final written address was also seen by The PUNCH on Thursday, maintained that the petition was not only based on conjecture, it was also anchored on “live conflicting and irreconcilable grounds.”
He argued that the petition was “enveloped in confusion,” adding that the grounds of the petition suggested one thing while “the evidence led “both oral and the dumped documentary, suggests something different.”