The Nasarawa State Election Tribunal witnessed heated proceedings as lawyers representing the petitioner and respondents clashed over the adoption of written addresses. The petitioner, represented by Chief Kanu Godwin Agabi (SAN), presented their case on September 8, 2023, and filed it on September 9, 2023. The respondent’s counsel countered with strong arguments and observations.
Chief Kanu Godwin Agabi argued that the precedent set by higher courts should guide the tribunal’s decision and emphasized that subpoenaed witnesses should not be allowed to testify under oath. He also stressed the importance of polling unit results (Form EC8As), considering them as the original results from reliable sources. He called on the tribunal to focus on certified documents, pointing out discrepancies between Form EC8As and EC8Bs and asserted that the petitioner, the PDP, should be declared the winner.
Agabi also questioned the absence of a cross-petition from the respondents, suggesting they had no substantial case. Tensions escalated during arguments, but the judges’ records ultimately favored the petitioner, as the respondents’ sincerity came into question.
The first respondent, INEC, represented by Issiaka Mohammed Dikko (SAN), challenged the petitioner’s claims, labeling their alleged victory as unrealistic and lacking substantial evidence.
Chief Wale Olanipekun (SAN), representing the second respondent, Engr. A.A. Sule, pointed out various objections raised during the petitioner’s case and requested the tribunal to dismiss the petition due to insufficient legal backing for the petitioner’s claims. He noted the absence of proper witness testimonies and inadmissible evidence, including the BVAS, and emphasized that the petitioner failed to mention any polling units where they received 25% of the votes.
Dr. Hassan Mohammed Liman, representing the third respondent, APC, supported the objections to witnesses and urged the tribunal to dismiss the entire petition. He adopted the second respondent’s appeal and highlighted the margin of lead declared in favor of A.A. Sule by Form EC8B and EC8D. Liman argued that the petitioner relied on allegations rather than facts, effectively undermining their own case.
The Nasarawa State Election Tribunal now faces the challenging task of weighing these arguments and evidence to make a fair and just decision regarding the election results. The legal battle continues as all parties await the tribunal’s final ruling.