Against the appeals made by Peter Obi and Atiku Abubakar over the outcome of the February 25 presidential election, the Supreme Court has affirmed President Bola Tinubu as the winner of the 2023 presidential election.
Atiku Abubakar and Peter Obi of the Peoples Democratic Party(PDP) and Labour Party have challenged the election results, which saw President Bola Tinubu of the All Progressives Congress (APC) emerge as the winner.
The appeals are based on various grounds, including using technology in the election, questioning Tinubu’s university qualifications, and other constitutional matters.
The apex court, in its lead judgement that was prepared and read by Justice Inyang Okoro, held that there was no merit in the petition that a former President and candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, filed to nullify the outcome of the election.
It held that Atiku did not prove that the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, did not substantially comply with provisions of the Electoral Act in the conduct of the election.
It held that the unavailability of results on INEC’s IReV portal “could not be why an election was nullified for whatever reason.
The apex court held that Atiku and PDP did not prove that they suffered any miscarriage of justice due to the dismissal of their petition by the Presidential Election Petition Court, PEPC.
It described as misconceived and misplaced, Atiku’s contention that Tinubu ought not to have been declared winner of the presidential election, having failed to secure 25% votes in the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, Abuja.
The apex court affirmed the position of the PEPC that the FCT does not have a status that is more special than that of the 36 States of the federation.
It further upheld the striking out of the evidence of some witnesses who testified for Atiku at the PEPC hearing, adding that most of the witnesses gave “inadmissible hearsay” evidence.
“The Appellants did not present any evidence to warrant the interference of the lower court’s findings,” the head of the apex court panel, Justice Okoro, added.