A lawyer to the seven state governors who filed a suit challenging the announcement of Bola Tinubu as the winner of the February 25 presidential election has explained why they withdrew the suit.
The seven states comprising Adamawa, Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Delta, Edo, Sokoto and Taraba, had on Friday filed a notice of discontinuance on the suit before the Supreme Court.
A senior lawyer with Mike Ozekhome (SAN), who pleaded anonymity, has explained that the matter was withdrawn because it had been overtaken by events.
The lawyer said it was filed praying the Supreme Court to compel the Attorney General of the Federation and the chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to halt the collation and announcement of results due to irregularities in the election.
“But with the declaration of the winner, we realised that the matter was stale because the court does not have the original jurisdiction to hear presidential election disputes.”
“So, we have decided to incorporate the arguments there to the individuals we are going to be representing at the tribunal.”
The seven states claimed in the suit that INEC did not follow the provisions of the Electoral Act, 2022 and the guidelines for the 2023 general elections, particularly uploading of results to the IREV through the BVAS, in declaring Tinubu the winner.
Among other reliefs, they had sought “A declaration that the entire results of the Presidential Election conducted on the 25th of February, 2023 announced by the Chairman of INEC at the National Collation Centre, Abuja, in flagrant violation of the provisions of Sections 25; 47(2); 60 (1), (2), (4) & (5); 62; 64(4)(a) & (b); 70; and 148 of the Electoral Act, 2022, governing the 2023 nationwide general elections, particularly paragraphs 38 of the INEC Regulations and Guidelines for the Conduct of Elections, 2022; and paragraphs 2.8.4; 2.9.0; and 2.9.1 of the INEC Manual for Election Officials, 2023, for the conduct of the Presidential Election, were invalid, null and void, and of no effect whatsoever.”