CPC To Election Tribunal: Sack Jonathan
Friday August 12, 2011 – BY IKECHUKWU NNOCHIRI
ABUJA – The Congress for Progressive Change, CPC, yesterday, urged embattled President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Isa Ayo Salami, to do justice to electoral system in the country by sacking President Goodluck Jonathan.
The party through a motion on notice it filed yesterday, pursuant to paragraph 18 of the Electoral Act 2010, as amended, and Section 149 [D] of the Evidence Act, pleaded the five-man Presidential Election Petition Tribunal panel, to enter judgment in favour of its presidential candidate, Muhammadu Buhari.
Alleging a subterranean collaboration between Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, and Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, the petitioner, contended that it was the reason why the electoral body refused to make available to it the materials used in the conduct of the April 16 Presidential election.
Consequently, it beseeched the court for “an order entering judgment in favour of the petitioner under Paragraph 18(11) of the Electoral Act, 2010 as amended and Section 149 of the Evidence Act on the ground that the order for inspection granted by this Honourable Court on the 24th May, 2011 is refusal or failure or neglect of the respondents to comply with the terms contained in the said order.”
Canvassing reasons why it sought the order, the CPC yesterday, averred that, “the Petitioner was one of the registered political parties that contested the Presidential Election held on 16th April, 2011 and had in consequence thereof demanded for election materials from the 1st respondent vide series of letters written to that effect before, during and at the conclusion of the election.
“That 1st and 2nd respondents denied the petitioner’s request by failing to make copies of the requested election materials available to the applicant and the applicant was as a result forced to file an application dated 15th May, 2011 for an order directing the 1st and 2nd respondents to produce for inspection of the applicants and permitting it to take copies of the election material used in the conduct of the election.
“That this Honourable Court had on 24th May, 2011 granted an order pursuant to the application referred to in paragraph 2 above in the following terms:
“An order that INEC shall grant the petitioner and any other party in the petition their counsel agents or experts access to the biometric data base created by the DDC machines for register of voters, used at the Presidential Election held on 16th April, 2011.
“An order that INEC shall grant access to the petitioner and any other party to the petition, their counsel and their experts, to inspect and take Certified True Copy, CTC, of election materials i.e.
“Register of voters used in all the polling units at Presidential Election held on 16/04/2011. Electoral Forms EC8 A, B, C, D & E and Manual for the Election.
“List of officials of INEC including ad-hoc staff who participated in the conduct of the election. Records of ballot papers distribution throughout the Federation. Ballot papers used in the Presidential Election held on 16/04/2011.
“Access for inspection and taking of copies of the election materials shall be at the statutory location of such election materials i.e. custody of resident electoral commissioners in various states.
“Custody of chairman of INEC provided all necessary official fees for such certification are paid. That the respondents have colluded to frustrate the execution of the order and contended, among others, that they would not allow access to the database, which they claimed, is not necessary for the proof of the Petitioner’s case.
“That even though the order for inspection was granted early enough in the proceeding, the applicants’ efforts to take advantage of the order was met with series of frustrations.
Meantime, the tribunal has fixed August 15 to hear the motion….accuses PDP, INEC of electoral malpractices(Vanguard)