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INEC tells presidential election tribunal to dismiss Atiku’s petition

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has asked the Presidential election tribunal to dismiss the petition of the Presidential Candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, on grounds that he did not meet the constitutional requirements to be declared winner of the February 25 election.

In a response filed before the tribunal, the commission  said the PDP flag bearer failed to score at least, one-quarter of the votes cast in at least two-thirds of the 36 states of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) and as such could not have been declared the winner.

As against the claim by the petitioners, INEC added that the election was conducted in substantial compliance with the Electoral Act 2022 and was not marred by any corrupt practices.

The commission insisted that the APC candidate, Bola Tinubu was duly elected as the President-elect.The commission said the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate met all the legal requirements to be so announced as the winner.

It argued that a candidate must not secure 25 per cent of votes in the FCT to be declared the winner.

On why it returned Tinubu as the winner, INEC said the APC candidate scored 25 per cent of the valid votes cast in 29 states of the Federation. The commission added that by the margin of the lead, it did not act hastily, as claimed by Atiku and the PDP in declaring Tinubu the winner.

It noted that Tinubu scored 25 per cent of the valid votes cast in 29 states, namely: Ekiti, Kwara, Osun, Ondo, Ogun, Oyo, Yobe, Lagos, Gombe, Adamawa, Katsina, Jigawa, Nasarawa, Niger, Benue, Akwa Ibom, Edo, Kogi, Bauchi, Plateau, Bayelsa, Kaduna, Kebbi, Kano, Zamfara, Sokoto, Taraba, Borno and Rivers.

It added that the FCT, beyond being the country’s capital “has no special constitutional status over and above the other 36 states of the Federation” to require a candidate in the presidential election to obtain at least 25 per cent of the votes cast in the FCT before being declared winner of the presidential election.

The commission subsequently urged the Tribunal to dismiss Atiku’s petition.

Prevail Inegbenose

Prevail Inegbenose is the Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Spark Media & Entertainment Ventures, the publisher of Spark News Daily - Nigeria's most sought-after online news platform - Politics, Sport & Entertainment. Prevail Inegbenose hails from Irrua, Esan Central LGA of Edo State. He studied Mass Communication from the prestigious Auchi Polytechnic Auchi and graduated in 2007. Prevail Inegbenose is a veteran journalist with 15 years of active and practical journalism. He has authored so many write-ups, a lot of which had been published in the newspapers, magazines and social media. Hence Prevail Inegbenose is a Journalist, Writer, Researcher, Author, Communication Expert and Consultant, Social Media Influencer, Project Management Expert, Peace Ambassador and Advocate of Good Governance and Better Society. He's a Pastor, in fact the Lead Pastor, House of God Int'l - Rest Tabernacle, Abuja Nigeria.

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