The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its presidential candidate in the February 23 election, Atiku Abubakar, have asked the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal to nullify the re-election of President Muhammadu Buhari.
They said that evidences by witnesses at the tribunal have proven that Buhari was not qualified to have participated in the 2019 election, hence should be disqualified.
They also said that the election should be annulled because ‘facts’ has shown that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and Buhari allegedly rigged the poll.
They said there were discrepancies in results between tendered Certified True Copies of forms EC8A and polling units.
Atiku and his party stated this in their final address to the tribunal, insisting that they have proved all allegations contained in their petition against the conduct of the February 23 presidential election.
Dr Levy Uzoukwu (SAN), lead counsel to Atiku and PDP, in a 43-page final address filed before the tribunal said the petitioners have established the fact that Buhari does not possess the requisite academic qualification for the position of President of Nigeria.
Uzoukwu added in the final address filed on August 14, that even Buhari’s own witnesses under cross examination admitted that Buhari did not possess a school certifcate, which is the basic requirements for contesting for the office of the president.
The petitioners then said, “We therefore submit that all the purported evidence led by the 2nd respondent (Buhari) to prove that he attended a secondary school or a primary school or that he attended some courses, is irrelevant because he did not rely on any of those purported qualifications in exhibit P1, he relied on primary school certifcate, WASC and Officer Cadet.
“Equally futile is his attempt to prove that he can speak and write in the English language. That is all irrelevant to his inability to produce his primary school certifcate, secondary school certifcate or WASC and his Officer Cadet qualification, whatever that means. Officer Cadet is not a qualification or certifcate under the Constitution and Electoral Act; nor is it known to any law.”
Buhari had submitted his Cambridge University certifcate before the tribunal. But the petitioners wondered how “it was easier for Buhari to go all the way to Cambridge in the United Kingdom to obtain a document, that his own witnesses said was not a certificate, instead of just driving down the street in Abuja to the Army Headquarters, or placing a phone call to the secretary of the Military Board in Abuja to hurry over with his certifcate or certifcates”
They went further to say, “A comparison of the purported Cambridge Assessment International Education Certifying Statement of the purported West African Examination Council (WAEC) certifcate and a certified true copy of the purported confidential result sheet of the University of Cambridge West African School Certificate of 1961 for the Provincial Secondary School, katsina reveals many discrepancies in the suppose result.
“One listed 8 subjects that the candidate therein mentioned one ‘Mohamed Buhari’ allegedly sat for, the other 6 subjects, both documents are therefore unreliable as both cannot be correct. The contradiction must count against the 2nd respondent.”
They also accused Buhari of making false claim by saying he attended, ‘Elementary School, Daura and Mai Aduwa 1948-52’.
“Elementary School Daura is totally different from Mai Aduwa, their locations are totally different,” they said.
Buhari had also claimed he entered Middle School Katsina in 1953, but the petitioners submitted that by 1953, the Middle School system had been abolished in the northern region of Nigeria.
Also on Buhari’s claim that his certifcates were with the military, the petitioners submitted that Buhari failed woefully to prove the claim, “rather the petitioners’ evidence to the contrary was not contested nor challenged.
The petitioners further submitted that the Nigerian Army had denied being in possession of Buhari’s alleged certifcates.
“One of the strongest evidence on the issue was given by the second respondent’s own witness, RW1, General Paul Tafa, (Rtd), who under cross examination by the 1st respondent (INEC), told the court firmly and unequivocally that the Army did not collect the certifcates of military Officers and added, ‘there was no such thing”.
On the claim that the last election was rigged and did not follow Electoral Act, the petitioners said with the plethora of evidence tendered and witnesses called they have been able to show to the tribunal that Buhari’s election was invalid.
According to them, analysis of results from 11 states showed how INEC in agreement with Buhari and the All Progressives Congress (APC) wrongly and unlawfully credited Buhari with votes not valid or lawful.
They went further to claim that a total of 2, 906,384 votes were cancelled across the country, while 2, 698,773 Nigerians were disenfranchised.
The petitioners said the two figures when added up, exceeded the 3,928,869 differential between the votes as stated in INEC form EC8E.