Tuesday, 1 November 2011
GOODLUCK JONATHAN DEFEATS BUHARI AT ELECTION PETITION TRIBUNAL
The five-man panel at the Election Petition Tribunal in Abuja has thrown out the petition of the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) challenging the victory of President Goodluck Jonathan at the 16 April 2011 general elections.
The landmark ruling delivered just moments ago today dismissed the CPC petition for lack of merit and comes after six months of intense legal battle.
Jonathan was declared was declared President after he won 59 percent of the votes during the last elections, however supporters of his rival and runner up in the votes, former military ruler Muhammadu Buhari, who polled at 32 percent, refused to accept the outcome.
Buhari’s CPC party filed a petition to challenge it in May, but according to the ruling, the petition falls flat.
“The petition fails in its entirety and is hereby dismissed,” Justice Kumai Akaahs told the court, reading out a unanimous decision by five judges hearing the case.
The CPC had argued that the vote was marred by irregularities. According to Reuters, the CPC claimed that electoral commision computers were rigged to sway the count against Buhari, adding that ruling People’s Democratic Party (PDP) vote was inflated in some of its southern stronghold.
Despite the unanimous decision by the panel to dismiss the CPC’s petition, the party’s national chairman Tony Momoh said it would appeal the decision.
“There judgment of conscience, judgment of people and judgment of God. We will go on appeal,” he told reporters.
Election observers and most Nigerians say the vote was the most credible for decades in Africa’s most populous nation, which had experienced virtually nothing but military rule and rigged elections for the past half century.
Until the CPC makes good on its threat to petition the ruling, the decision from the petition tribunal stands.