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Atiku to call 400 witnesses at tribunal to prove 2019 poll was ‘rigged’

Atiku accuses Buhari of ruining Nigeria with 'grand cluelessness'

The opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its presidential candidate in the 2019 general elections, Atiku Abubakar, have said that they intend to call 400 witnesses to prove their claim that the 2019 general elections were rigged.

They made this known on Monday at the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal where they are challenging the declaration of President Muhammadu Buhari as the winner of the February 23 presidential poll .

Atiku and PDP have only 14 days to call the witnesses as well as to tender all documents they need to prove their claim.

According to the five- man tribunal, led by Justice Mohammed Garba, the 14 days period is prescribed under paragraph 16 (3) of the First Schedule to the Electoral Act.

In his reaction, the lead counsel for the petitioners, Livy Uzoukwu (SAN), said already his clients had proposed to call 400 witnesses and “intend to call as many witnesses as possible within the prescribed time” .

He added that lawyers representing the various parties in the matter had also accepted that “we will tender and reserve objection till final addresses.

“What we have not agreed on yet is whether we will be given opportunity or isolate the preliminary objection from the main address.

“We are also not too sure on the length of time of cross-examination.”

READ ALSO: INEC blames ‘external influences,’ rather than ‘internal forces’ for sham elections

On the length of time of cross-examination, Justice Garba said it “will be dependent on the circumstances and facts”, particularly the number of witnesses parties to the case intended to call .

“But we shall set a template for cross -examination which will not be sacrosanct. Like I said it will be dependent on the circumstances,” Garba added.

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