In a recent development, President-elect Bola Tinubu and Vice President-elect Kashim Shettima have called on the Presidential Election Petition Court to dismiss the request made by Atiku Abubakar and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for a live broadcast of the proceedings.
According to emerging reports, the respondents have argued that the relief sought by the applicants falls outside the court’s authority.
The respondents, represented by their legal team led by Chief Wole Olanipekun, expressed their respect for the petitioners while labeling the motion as an abuse of the court’s processes. They criticised the application, deeming it frivolous, and stressed that the court is not a platform for public entertainment but a space for serious legal proceedings.
The respondents questioned the motive behind filing an application that aims to distract the court and waste valuable time. In their counter affidavit, they argued that the application touches on matters of court policy formulation, which is beyond the jurisdiction of the current composition of the Presidential Election Petition Court.
They further pointed out that the application concerns powers and jurisdiction reserved exclusively for the President of the Court of Appeal, an issue the court cannot address presently.
Emphasising that the application only serves to consume precious judicial time and is unrelated to the original petition, the respondents urged the court to dismiss it in the interest of justice.
In their written address, the respondents disputed the applicants’ reference to the allowance of virtual proceedings during the COVID-19 pandemic. They highlighted that Atiku and the PDP failed to acknowledge the practice directions issued by the respective courts to facilitate such proceedings.
The respondents also criticised the application for requesting the court to issue an order that it cannot supervise, stating that the court does not make orders in vain or that cannot be enforced.