Home 2023 ELECTION: LP, PDP chieftains urge calm as Presidential Tribunal delivers judgment

LP, PDP chieftains urge calm as Presidential Tribunal delivers judgment

Ahead of the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal Judgment scheduled to take place today (Wednesday), Nigerians, particularly supporters of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, and the Labour Party, LP, have been urged to eschew violence and remain calm.

There are insinuations that the LP supporters and their counterparts in the PDP are planning to stage a protest if the judgment is made in favour of the ruling All Progressives Congress.

Recall that the presidential candidate of LP in the February election, Peter Obi, and his PDP counterpart, Atiku Abubakar had rejected the outcome of the election over alleged irregularities, which according to them marred the poll.

Contrary to the declaration by the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, that President Bola Tinubu won the poll after scoring the highest votes, Obi and Atiku approached the tribunal seeking the nullification of Tinubu’s victory.

Obi and Atiku argued that Tinubu did not win a majority of lawful votes as claimed by the electoral umpire.

According to the petitioners, at the time INEC chairman, Mahmood Yakubu, declared Tinubu as the winner, collation was ongoing since many of the presidential election results were yet to be uploaded to the INEC’s Results Viewing (IReV) Portals.

Obi is also asking the court to nullify Tinubu’s victory on the ground that the ruling party failed to garner 25 percent votes in the Federal Capital Territory, FCT.

A month after concluding the hearing of the petitions, the five-member panel of the Presidential Election Petition Court, led by Justice Haruna Tsammani, is set to deliver judgment.

The event which is expected to be televised, has triggered tension across the country.

While the spokesperson to President Tinubu, Ajuri Ngelale claimed that his principal is not worried about the possible verdict of the presidential election tribunal, the same may not be the reality with some Nigerians, including the petitioners.

According to the Department of State Services, DSS, some individuals are already planning to stage violent protests across the country.

However, some stakeholders have called for calm, urging Nigerians to prepare themselves to accept the judgment in good faith.

The Head of Media and Communications of the defunct Obi-Datti Presidential Campaign Council, Diran Onifade said there is no need to cause chaos no matter the verdict by the tribunal.

According to him, the tribunal judgment is not final, stressing that it is still subject to appeal.

He said, “We have always been appealing to our supporters to take the judgment whichever way it comes.

This is just the first instance in the case, there is still an opportunity for appeal. We don’t know who the judgement will favour yet but we have been appealing to our supporters to give peace a chance.

We should not go with the mindset that we can’t get justice. The judges gave us fair opportunities, they listened to us and each of us presented the evidence we had

“While in court, we saw what the other party presented and we know we have a good case. It is now up to the judges to determine the outcome”.

Similarly, a Chieftain of the main opposition party, PDP, Mr.Iorfa Mathew called on Atiku’s supporters to remain calm no matter the outcome of the petition.

In a chat with our correspondent, Iorfa urged Nigerians, especially Atiku’s supporters, to accept whatever the judgment may be.

All we want is a country where things are working. It doesn’t matter who the judgment favors, Nigeria will not crash.

It is the desire to see things working in the country again that made the petitioners go to court, so why would anyone think of causing chaos because of the tribunal judgment?

The tribunal’s judgment is not final. The Supreme Court will have the final judgment, so why are we so worried?

The system has been in bad shape for a very long time, changing it won’t come easy. So we should set aside our emotions and accept whatever the judges tell us.

If we had been so mature when the INEC declared Tinubu the winner of the poll and decided to do it legally, we could still do it. Let’s be calm and embrace peace for the sake of our dear nation”, he said.

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