By Bashir Muhammad Inuwa
The commencement of a pretrial session in the ongoing Governorship petition filed by All Progressives Congress APC, challenging the victory of Abba Kabir Yusuf of NNPP was stalled on Tuesday over failure of the Petitioner’s counsel to effect a mandatory fee.
But, APC lead Counsel told the Tribunal that failure of Network prevented them to enable generate REMITA and pay the Federal Government the sum of N700 being a payment to upload pretrial forms has delayed.
Nuraini Jimoh SAN told the court that they faced a slight hitch to access the Network and generate IGR to pay and upload the pretrial session forms.
He stressed “My Lords there was serious technical problem to access and generate REMITA. The Secretary of the Tribunal contacted Headquarters over the technical issue being encountered by the Petitioner but they said we will not continue until the process completed electronically.”
Nuraini Jimoh told the court that the petitioner has 7 days within which to file the pretrial forms, explaining that they are within time.
The counsel prayed for an adjournment to enable petitioner file their pretrial forms.
In the Petition, APC is praying the Tribunal to declare that Abba Yusuf is not qualified to contest the election, arguing that his name was not being in the list of members of NNPP sent to INEC.
APC is also praying the Tribunal to declare that NNPP did not win the election with the majority of lawful votes because some of the votes cast for them were invalid and if removed from their scores APC will have the highest number of votes.
In his response, Abba Kabir Yusuf through his counsel Chief Awomolo Adegboyega, SAN described APCs petition as dead on arrival for lacking merit and competency to stand the test of time, urging the Tribunal to dismiss the petition arguing that it is frivolous.
Consquently, when the Tribunal asked respondents on the prayer of APC, Counsel to INEC, Barrister Emmanuel Osayomi and that of Abba Kabir Yusuf Chief Awomolo Adegboyega SAN didn’t oppose the prayer to adjourn.
However, Counsel to the INEC Barrister Osayomi urged the Tribunal to allow him file an application to amend processes.
Justice Watch News gathered that the INEC made a mistake by referring All Progressives Congress, APC as All Progressives Party.
But counsel to the Petitioner told the court that they need a time to study the application to decide weather they can object or not.
The Tribunal fixed 7th June, 2023 for hearing of INEC application and commencement of pretrial session.